Police release suspects in Abuja pastor’s killing

Photo: Buzznigeria.com
Photo: Buzznigeria.com

Suspects reportedly arrested over the killing last year of an Abuja-based pastor, Eunice Elisha, have been released, PREMIUM TIMES has learnt.

The suspects, whose identities were not revealed by the Abuja police command, were released because police investigation “could not link them to the murder,” said spokesperson of the command, Manzah Anjuguri.

“What happened is that when the incident occurred, arrests were made. But during the course of the investigation we found that the persons arrested could not be linked to the said murder. And we cannot keep them if we do not have any case against them,” Mr. Anjuguri told PREMIUM TIMES.

“They were released under the condition that they will be invited for questioning whenever the need arises. The commissioner has instructed the Divisional Police Officer for that region to intensify efforts on the matter; the case has not been closed. The investigation is still ongoing,” said Mr. Anjuguri.

His statement contradicts his earlier claims that the suspects were helping in the investigation.

Hours after the murder of 42-year-old Mrs. Elisha on July 9, 2016, the police said it had arrested suspects in the matter, and said their confessions were considered helpful in the investigations into the matter.

“We have made some arrests and they are helping in our investigation”, the police spokesperson had said at the time.

“The commissioner of police has ordered the homicide section of the command to take over the investigation of the case,” said Mr. Anjuguri, the same day Mrs. Elisha was found dead on the streets of Kubwa, a suburb of the Federal Capital Territory.

During that disclosure in July, Mr. Anjuguri stated neither the number of suspects “arrested” nor their identities.

He told PREMIUM TIMES that the identities were withheld because “the investigation was at an early stage and the matter was a crucial one”.

Five months later in December, Mr. Anjuguri declined commenting on the status of those arrested, when contacted by this paper.

“All I can tell you is that investigation is still ongoing,” he said in December 2016.

Mrs. Elisha was killed while conducting an early morning preaching in the streets of Kubwa, a suburb of Abuja.

Speaking also in December 2016 about the government’s failure to address the matter, president of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Samson Ayokunle, said the State Security Service and other agencies expected to ensure the safety of Nigerians had neglected thier duty.

“How can the life of somebody be snubbed out like that on the streets of Abuja, Nigeria’s seat of power? Where has evangelism become a crime in Nigeria? The SSS, police and other law enforcement agencies are being paid salaries in order to enforce law and apprehend criminals but in this case, they failed to justify their pay,” said Mr. Ayokunle.

Also speaking on the matter, Catholic Bishop of Abuja Arch Diocese, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, described the situation as grossly unfortunate.

“We have to put this in the context of a country where law enforcement is not at its highest; a whole Attorney General of the Federation was killed and till now we do not know who committed the act. That kind of situation should tell us that we are in a country where human life is practically negotiable.

News of the release of the suspects came months after Kano State government also released suspects in the killing of a 74-year-old woman, accused of blasphemy.

Bridget Agbahime was killed by a mob at a market in Kano.

The government filed charges against her suspected killers, but later freed them without giving reasons for its decision.

“What we need to say and say it without any hypocrisy is that in Nigeria, there is no law against blasphemy,” said Mr. Onaiyekan.

“There is no better proof of that than the fact that more often than not, our Lord Jesus Christ is blasphemed against by those who do not believe in him, without any action taken against them. So we just need to take this matter seriously; any body who is believed to have committed murder, under the excuse of blasphemy should not be excused on that ground because there is no law in Nigeria against blasphemy.”


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  • PLAN A

    Nigeria or Niger-area ? Do we really have a future together?

    • Gary

      Yes, if you’re of the privileged parasites bequeathed the rulership of Nigeria to the benefit of your people and the British.

      You can then use the military, play East against West with an Obasanjo, Tinubu and Amaechi to ensure that the status quo of “one Nigeria” is “not negotiable”.

      • Tommy Soto

        true talk, salute!

      • PLAN A

        One of the reasons why Boko Haram activities have persisted is because of situations like this. We are a theoretical secular state with enhanced ethno-religious senses.

    • Lanre

      No. We do not. The struggle for the freedom of Yorubas and Igbos from Nigeria has not started yet.

  • Watch man

    Case closed! Just like the suspects in the murder case of Mrs. Bridget were released in Kano. The template usually goes like this: arrest and arraign suspects, allow time to pass over which the heat will cool down, conduct useless court session, give more time for people to be less interested, and finally let suspects off the hook. Case closed, and the beat goes on until the whole contraption, perhaps, goes in flames.

    • amazing2012

      Hahahahaha ignorance is always a solution to daft mind. What doyou want the police to do, If the suspects were not found wanting ? However, what i expect from you is to emphasize on finding those responsible or the query of police DPO, cp, IG and others.
      See the situation as human right case not sectional, regional, ethnic or religious. Christians failed because they isolate issues that needs collective response.

      • Gary

        E-rat,
        Yep…they were found “not wanting” and had to be freed. Just like the murderers in the Kano beheading.
        So to deflect responsibility from your principals, you want folks to blame the local DPO. Nice try.

      • okenwa

        Mad dog.

  • Wetin Naija

    One Nigeria for you.

  • westman

    Nigeria police for u.
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  • Lanre

    Yorubaland will be free.

  • Ohnigeria Godsavenigeria

    This change is both evil, satanic and a big scam.this nation can never continue like this. If it is not possible to have a just, equitable and fair society under the law, let everyone answer his father’s name.

  • General Sam Bockerie

    Were you expecting a trial before? You must be kidding me, when we have the chief priest of Shariah presiding over the country.

    • AryLoyds

      Is Ndume not walking free , so what do your expect ? Until we restructure we are wasting our time . WE shall have losers and winners when this happen . So we must live with it .

    • marcos avelino

      This moron still existing – The 20th century was the bloodiest ever and 99 percent of the dead were in two christian european wars tearing each other with over 100 million killed. A christian invented napalm bomb – just to cook the flesh of vietnamese people while alive ! ignorant african monkey

      • Otile

        Why do you continue to copy and paste this trash in every article you read? Shame

  • nigeriacustomservice

    Hello

  • God please have mercy on this blighted nation. May the soul of this woman rest in peace. As easy as it is to say, the restless souls of this woman and that of Mrs Bridget will torment those responsible for Their deaths and a nation that is worthless.

  • Nigeriamovingforward

    Nigerian police are grossly incompetent. Just like the Rev said, an Attorney General was killed and no one has paid.

  • taiwo

    Administration of criminal justice in Nigeria under Buhari and in kaduna under El rufai is a total failure. We should not expect much from these fulanis. May God have mercy on us and grant us selfless leaders and if He wills it, may the country break up quickly.

  • Dr Abba

    But innocent people are still locked up for carrying out their religious duties. The good thing is this wahhabi govt will not last Forever.

  • Kñîghtš Tëmpłær

    What do you expect from a country where the president is a top enabler of terror…Mr. Buhari is comfortable with the way his people, the Hausa/Fulani terrorists are spreading their beastliness and barbarism across Nigeria…he’s comfortable with the massacre of Christians, Pagans and those they consider Infidels because his presidency was built on the foundation of extremism…Unfortunately, the vast majority of Southern Nigerians, remain blissfully ignorant of the ever-swelling tide of Hausa/Fulani Islamic cultural expansion…

  • Iskacountryman

    case closed…

  • okenwa

    Christians should start killing moslems in the name of allah.