Monday, November 14, 2016

Who Killed Bridget Agbahime?

By Ikechukwu Amaechi
When Bridget Agbahime was murdered on June 2, 2016, in the presence of her husband, Pastor Mike Agbahime, by Muslim fundamentalists in the name of “Allah”, Nigerian leaders made the usual noises.
Agbahime, who hailed from Imo State, and was a member of the Deeper Life Bible Church, was said to have prevented Muslims from performing ablution in front of her shop at Kofar Wambai Market in Kano, where she sold plastic wares.
Late Mrs. Bridget Agbahime 
The punishment for such a “crime” was death, in the opinion of her traducers, who promptly accused her of blasphemy and lynched her.
She was murdered at 74 by those young enough to be her grandchildren. Even her age could not act as a leash on their murderous impulse.
The market was preparing to close for the day’s business when the soulless characters carried out the gruesome murder. So, it was in broad daylight. Those around saw and knew the murderers.
The hideous characters didn’t wear masks. In their usual impunity, like the axiomatic son whose father sends him to steal, and who, therefore, kicks the door open with his foot, the religious bigots, didn’t care a hoot.
They knew that nothing had happened to their fellow blood-thirsty zealots who beheaded Gideon Akaluka in the same Kano and paraded the streets with his head hoisted on a spike with blood dripping on their hands.
Because the murderers were known, it was not a surprise when police headquarters in Abuja announced almost immediately that two suspects had been arrested, even as then Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase, called for calm while assuring that justice would be done.
A statement issued by then Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Olabisi Kolawole said: “In order to ensure a diligent and professional investigation, [Arase] has directed the deputy inspector general of police in charge of the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (FCIID) to deploy the Homicide Section of the Department to immediately take over the investigation of the case and ensure a meticulous investigation and speedy prosecution of the arrested suspects.”

There was the usual outrage in the land when such crimes are committed.
President Muhammadu Buhari; Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje; and Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha; all rose in condemnation.
Buhari’s media aide, Femi Adesina, said his principal “commended the law enforcement agents for apprehending the prime suspect behind the killing, as well as the Kano State government, which summoned a meeting of Christian and Islamic leaders, the widower of the deceased, and security agencies, as soon as the sad event occurred.”
He also said Buhari assured that justice would be done in the matter, and urged the people not to take the law into their hands.
Ganduje chaired a meeting attended by Agbahime; Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Kano State Chairman, Rev. Ransome Bello; Islamic scholars and security agencies.
At the meeting, Ganduje condoled with Agbahime, stressing that “the killing of his wife is unjustifiable and without her fault”, and asserted that justice must be done in accordance with the law.
Okorocha thundered from Owerri that security agencies in Kano State must carry out a thorough investigation into the killing and prosecute the murderers.
When five suspects were arraigned on Friday, June 10, 2016 in Kano over the killing, some heaved a sigh of relief believing that the savages would soon be brought to justice.
After all, it was a straightforward case. If the woman was not at fault, as concluded by Ganduje, then her killers must be punished. Even if she was at fault, barbarians cannot mete out such hideous jungle justice in the name of religion.
But for some who have lost faith in the ability of the Nigerian state to ensure justice for the oppressed; who have sadly realised that the idea of equity and justice is a misnomer in the country, such hope was rather forlorn.
So, when the five suspects – Dauda Ahmed, Abdulmumeen Mustafa, Zubairu Abubakar, Abdullahi Abubakar and Musa Abdullahi – who were slammed with a four-count charge that included inciting disturbances and culpable homicide, were discharged on Thursday, November 3, by a Kano State Magistrate’s Court, it didn’t come to many as a surprise.
It is in character.
Chief Magistrate, Muhammad Jibril, discharged the five suspects and terminated the case on the advice of the state attorney general.
Principal State Counsel, Rabiu Yusuf, who represented the attorney general, told the court that they received the case file from the police on June 8.
And then the bombshell: 
“Having gone through the case diary, the attorney general of Kano State evaluated the facts in accordance with Sections 130 and 150 of the Criminal Procedure Code and presented the legal advice.
“The legal advice presented to the court, dated June 24, states that there is no case to answer as the suspects are all innocent and orders the court to discharge all the suspects.”
Case closed!
Counsel to the suspects, Abdulsalam Gambo, commended the attorney general for his intervention just as the suspects and their families expressed gratitude to God for the judgment and for their freedom.
Knowing Nigeria well, a country that revels in injustice, this is the end of the story. Agbahime, like many others before her and many yet to come, had died in vain.
If the state cannot stop the brutal murder of its law-abiding citizens, the least it can do is ensure that the dead gets the justice he or she deserves. Not in Nigeria.
This is a country that demands patriotism from citizens but offers nothing in return, not even a guarantee of the sanctity of life.
While it is possible that the accused persons were actually innocent of the crime and therefore deserved to be discharged and acquitted, the question remains, who killed Agbahime? Or are the police telling Nigerians that she committed suicide?
If the “Wambai 5” were not the culprits, then it behoves the police to arrest the culprits and bring them to justice.
Or are the police telling us that investigating a murder case that happened in a market square in broad daylight and full glare of everyone, including the victim’s husband, has become rocket science?
If the Kano State attorney general gave this legal advisory on June 24, two weeks after the suspects were arraigned, why did it take more than five months for the magistrate to act?
The answer is simple. The suspects were arraigned to fulfill all righteousness. There was neither the political will nor the intention to prosecute them ab initio. They were simply detained for tempers to cool down and for the public to forget.
So, where is the justice President Buhari promised?
Freeing these blood thirsty hooligans who kill in the name of God is an incentive for them to kill again and again. And they will. That is evil.
The Agbahime family may not have the resources to seek and get the justice their matriarch deserves.
But that fact should not comfort those who commit these heinous crimes against fellow human beings in the name of “Allah” because every crime has its comeuppance and God’s judgment is sure.
Those who wonder why Nigeria is not making any progress need not look very far. No country sheds so much innocent blood of her citizens and prospers. Never!

*Amaechi is the Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief of TheNiche newspaper (ikechukwuamaechi@yahoo.com )

2 comments:

  1. ITS A PITY THAT HUMAN BEINGS CAN KILL A FELLOW HUMAN BEING CREATED BY GOD AS GOD CREATED THE EVIL MURDERS,I REPEAT, THE ONLY SOLUTION TO ALL THIS NONSENSE IS TO SEPARATE THAT FALSE & ILLEGAL UNION CALLED NIGERIA ,NO BODY CAN CONVINCE THAT NIGERIA IS ONE ENTITY,BECAUSE ,Bridget CAN NOT PREACH HER RELIGION IN THE SAME COUNTRY WHILE ALHAJA Bintu WILL COME TO OWERRI AND SHOUT ALOKBRA FREELY.PLEASE ''WATER & OIL CAN NEVER MIX''.AND LET ALL CHRISTIANS IN THAT NORTHERN NIGERIA RELOCATE WHERE THEY CAN PRACTICE THEIR RELIGION FREELY, BECAUSE NIGERIA IN NOT AND WILL NEVER BE ONE COUNTRY.

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  2. If we the Ibos because we are mostly the Victims, decide and commit to develop our states and live in peace with our kinsmen all these atrocities will stop. Let the North seek us out in Our states to purchase our products. They will then respect us and perhaps learn to live with us peacefully. What a pariah state we live in, in the name of NIGERIA.

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