Killers of Cynthia Osokogu sentenced to death

Cynthia Osokogu

A Lagos State High Court, Igbosere, on Thursday sentenced Okwumo Nwabuzor and his nephew, Olisaeloka Ezike, to death by hanging for killing a postgraduate student, Cynthia Osokogu whom they lured from Nasarawa to Lagos before strangling her in an hotel in Festac Town in 2012.

While delivering the judgement in the case that lasted four yours, the visibly angry judge, Olabisi Akinlade, said the accused deserved the sentence as they were not remorseful of their action, and were telling the court lies after offering confessional statements to the police.

“Justice is not only for the victim but for the society at large,” she said. “The law says anyone found guilty of committing murder shall be sentenced to death. This court is not in a position to change the provision of the law.”

The judge also found the duo guilty on three other counts and sentenced them to a total of 20 years imprisonment each.

They were sentenced to 14 years in jail for conspiracy to commit murder, three years for conspiracy to commit felony by stealing, and three years for stealing a Blackberry phone.

Ms. Osokogu, 25, was lured to Lagos by Mr. Nwanbufor, 37, whom she met on Facebook. The court said Mr. Nwanbufor drugged and murdered her in Cosmilla Hotel, Lakeview Estate, Festac Town with the assistance of his nephew, Mr. Ezike, 27.

Two others, Orji Osita, a pharmacist who sold Ropynol, the drug used on the deceased, and Ezike Nonso, the brother of the second defendant, were charged with reckless and negligent act, and with possession of stolen property.

The judge acquitted and discharged Messrs. Osita and Nonso.

While delivering the judgement, Mrs. Akinlade said she relied on the evidence and testimonies provided by the prosecution.

She said having carefully analysed the evidence and testimonies before the court, the prosecution proved beyond reasonable doubt that Messrs. Nwabufor and Ezike murdered Ms. Osokogu.

“The evidence of the prosecution remained uncontroverted and relies mainly on the testimonies of witnesses and evidence,” she said.

She recounted in graphic details how the deceased was lured by the convicts who promised to help her buy goods at cheap prices in Lagos.

After she arrived Lagos, she was lodged in the hotel where she was drugged, chained and her gagged with a sellotape. Her hands were also tied behind her back with the sellotape.

Following the testimony of the pathologist who conducted an autopsy on Ms. Osokogu, the court ruled that she died of asphyxiation caused by the blocking of her airways with cloth materials held in place by sellotape.

Though the convicts pleaded not guilty and tried to withdraw the confessional statement they made to the police, claiming they were made under duress, the court admitted the statements they were corroborated by the testimonies of the witnesses and the evidence provided by the police.

The judge said the fact that the police produced a video footage of the convicts making the confessional statement also helped in countering the claim by the convicts that they made the statement under duress.

“The court was satisfied that the confessional statements were not given under duress and admitted them in evidence. A confession is sufficient to gain conviction,” she said.

“The confessional statement of the accused is consistent with the state of the body and consistent to the medical evidence. I shall act on it accordingly,” she said.

The judge specifically thanked the Area E police division in Festac Town, and particularly Joseph Edo, a police inspector who apprehended the accused, for a thorough investigation.

The judge also dismissed the claim by Mr. Nwabufor that Ms. Osokogu was his fiancee and was going to introduce him to her father, saying that under cross-examination he could not tell the deceased’s birthday, the name of her mother, a home town or in fact anything about her.

“It is very clear that the first defendant is untruthful and deceived the court,” she said.

In sentencing both men to death by hanging, the judge said it was no longer relevant to know who, between the two, actually killed Ms. Osokogu.

“The second defendant acted in consent with the first defendant and will bear the consequences of their action irrespective of whoever committed the offence.

The accused persons displayed no emotion after the sentence was read.

They hid their faces from journalists who were trying to photograph them, and were quickly led away from the court room into the waiting Black Maria outside the court premises.


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  • Adewale

    Well deserved judgement. Thou shalt not kill is one of the ten commandments God gave Moses. Anyone that kills deserves death.

    • kusanagi

      The irony of your comment is clearly lost on you.

      • Adewale

        You want them to be set free, fellow killer. Don’t worry, your own judgment day is around the corner.

        • kusanagi

          “Thou shalt not kill is one of the ten commandments God gave Moses.”

          “Anyone that kills deserves death.”

          Do you not see the irony in your remarks.

          “Well deserved judgement”

          Okay. On one hand you’re quoting bible not to kill on the other hand, you’re saying actually some people should be killed.

          IRONY. It was funny. I pointed it out. Get over yourself. Calm down. It’s not the end of the world. No one supports killers.

          Peace out.

          • ita ekpo

            I have one question for you. With your quote do see or hear the bible saying you can purposely kill someone.Ask yourself why he kill as you said thou shall not kill. But he killed what follow is judgement.

  • 4ustta

    That serves them right!

  • Frank Bassey

    …and the animals in Northern Nigeria (Kano and Kaduna) who beheaded a woman and another Pastor on alleged blasphemy charges are set free by courts in Northern Nigeria. Is this a country? So killing by drugging a victim is more death and criminal than cutting off of the head. Buhari has really brought change in every facet of our national life.

    • Olaola

      Biafraud monkey, how many of the killers in your SE jungle have been sentenced to death for their crimes?
      Do you remember when bodies where flowing in a river in the SE under Jonathan, how many people have been arrested and prosecuted for those crimes? NONE. Just STF UP.

    • Julius

      What are you talking about dude ? How many murder cases that didn’t even make it to court under Jonathan ? Why are linking Buhari to this

      • ita ekpo

        Why i’m talking about him is because he can not respect Nigeria law. Him as a leader who suppose to show example to others. If all the sitting President ignore the law tell me how will Nigeria look like. London that he went to get medical treatment is law make it to build that hospital he can go and have good treatment. If they ignored the law how come that his will be fly to london.

  • musings

    And the Nigerian govt will say that corruption is a monster or an incurable cancer in Nigeria. I disagree. Just imagine if Dimeji Bankole was hanged for stealing, or if Obasanjo, IBB, Abdulsalami, Atiku, and all the past ministers and govt officials were hanged for stealing, fraud and corruption, I am sure Saraki and Dogara would not have committed their crimes or be as dubious.

    • Yemi

      Add to that GEJ, Ekweme and Ngozi Okonla

    • Julius

      Is there a reason why Igbo folks are not in your list ?

  • Rommel

    When will the sentence be carried out? at least Edo state is ready to carry it out if others are not willing

  • SAM .A

    Judge Olabisi Akinlade had done justice in this case , I am very proud of her verdict , I have personally followed up this case , now the wicked murderers will now taste out of their own poison , let them go and meet the Devil their master and commence their eternal damnation . EVIL always reap evil at the cross road of their live .

    • Uzoma

      Just that it took long. Something has to be done to expedite action on such cases. I can understand that care needs to be taken not to convict the innocent but the ideal would be a situation where within a maximum of one year the sentencing has been done to help family and friends begin the healing process in time.

      • SAM .A

        Here Justice is delayed but not denied . because the judiciary process is outdated and archaic.

        • ita ekpo

          Can you see that this judgement is not buihari involvement. Like is PMB hand every judgement will be amended or adjournment after adjornment.

      • ita ekpo

        My friend that is how law suppose to be. If you kill somebody and you are guilty at the court of justice not injustice. Why keeping you. To come back to kill against. The proplem is the sharia law which have no boundary. The constitution of nigeria is not for sharia is only connect to muslim. Now the vice president will name pastor alahji OSINBANJO.

  • Mary


  • ita ekpo

    What does a Christian have to be judge by sharia law. How would Muslim feel if sitting President is Christian and leave the constitution right of killing to Christian ways of killing. How come the whole Nigeria can not kick against this evil act by Buhari. They whole northierners are happy with what their man is doing. If Hausa planned to close meeting the stick to one voice no matter their differences. But those that call south east and south south are busy fighting their self. When are we going to let go from going against his brother. Also to embrace on ideas brought in by small Boy or senior man. Then sit to see if is good ideas before we look at his been small. As small ideas can go far. Take it as when you leave to foreign country your position back then can not go with you. Your change there will even make you to a job which is not up to the one back home. At some point you regret of leaving your job down here. Apply this principle as if you are in foreign land in your country. Then you will see the difference in that country.


    • Julius

      Wtf in hell are you talking about ?

    • Bahaushe

      LEVITICUS 24:7
      ”Any one who takes the life of a human being is to be put to death”
      You heard the punishment of a murderer in the holy Bible unless you are heathen or crude gentile that can’t accept commandment of GOD.There is no difference between your reaction that of the murderers you show no remorse, very wicked soul.You have no sympathy to either the murdered young lady nor her parent, thinking that all is well with her two brothers in Christ she travelled all along more than 1000km away from Lagos for only her get killed by money worshippers.You shall read your comment for the second time to see weather it makes sense to you if it makes then you need psychiatric Doctor assistance.