The victim was a lecturer at the Federal College of Education, Okene, Kogi State.
A Lagos High Court Judge, Joseph Oyewole, Thursday, sentenced a driver to death by hanging for the murder of a lecturer.
The driver, Kehinde Olude, was accused of murdering R.A. Adisa, a senior lecturer at the Federal College of Education, Okene, Kogi state, in November 2000; after he dispossessed him of his new Honda car.
“The only punishment for murder is the death penalty,” said Mr. Oyewole, while reading out his judgment.
“Accordingly, the sentence of the court upon you, Kehinde Olude, is that you be hanged by the neck until you be dead and may the Lord have mercy on your soul.”
Death on the highway
In his submission to the court, Luqman Sanusi, who led the prosecution, stated that the deceased, who could not drive, sought Mr. Olude’s help to drive his new vehicle to Okene.
He was murdered en route their destination, at Alafon village, along the Lagos/Ibadan Expressway.
After committing the murder, Mr. Olude, a driver at the Institute of Management and Technology, Ketu, sold the car, with the help of a friend, and used the proceeds to start processing a trip abroad.
Among the five witnesses called by the prosecution was Mr. Olude’s father, whose testimony the judge said “were not subjected to cross-examination by the defence.”
‘guilty as charged’
In his ruling, the judge stated that the facts before him showed that the deceased had purchased the fairly used car in Lagos and engaged Mr. Olude, whom he had a ‘cordial’ relationship with to drive him to Okene.
However, when the defendant drove into the deceased’s father’s residence at Okene; the old man, abreast of his son’s financial capability, ordered that the “unlicensed car” be taken out of his home, according to the judge.
The judge also noted that the deceased’s friends and relations who testified before the court never referred to him as late.
But “the accused person, in the witness box, had no inhibition in referring to him as deceased indicating knowledge of the unfortunate situation of the said gentleman.”
“I hold that there is sufficient evidence before the court to unequivocally ground the inference that the defendant murdered the deceased, Mr. R.A. Adisa,” Mr. Oyewole said.