Three teenagers and a 20-year-old arrested for allegedly beheading and burning the head of Sofiat Kehinde for money rituals in Ogun State have said they saw “guidelines” on how to be rich on Facebook.
The ritual suspects include Wariz Oladehinde, 17, and Abdul Gafar Lukman, 19, and the 20-year-old, Mustakeem Balogun, and the boyfriend of the murdered woman, Soliu Majekodunmi, 18.
The four men were caught last Saturday in Oke Aregba community, Abeokuta, burning the head of a girl, said to be in a relationship with one of them.
On Monday, the police paraded the suspects at the State Headquarters, Eleweran, where they said they got the ritual guidelines on Facebook.
Explaining his role, Mr Majekodunmi said that when the victim visited him on Friday, he strangled her and asked his friend and the others to behead her.
He said the four of them had contributed money to purchase the other ‘ingredients’ needed for the ritual while awaiting for the day they would behead the girl.
Mr Majekodunmi said Ms Kehinde was introduced to him in December 2021.
He blamed Mr Balogun for being the arrow head of the act, saying he was the one who brought the guidelines from Facebook and forced them to carry out the act.
“Last year December, Mustekeem gave me her number that I should be dating her,” Mr Majekodunmi said.
“The first time Sofiat came to my house, I informed Mustekeem that she was around and that she had agreed to my proposal for a relationship.
“Also, the second time Sofiat came I told Mustekeem, but he told me that Sofiat is not a good girl and advised that we should ‘use’ her for money rituals. Mustekeem said he saw a guideline for Oshole (Money ritual) on Facebook and he had a screenshot of it.
“Since then, he has been disturbing me that we should use Sofiat for the ritual, but I didn’t agree with him.
“In fact, on many occasions, I lied to Sofiat that I am not at home just to dissuade her from coming. During the process, Mustekeem had ensured that we all make contributions towards other ingredients needed for the ritual.
“So, eventually, Sofiat came to my house on Friday. I was inside my room with her while Mustekeem was outside. Later, Mustekeem told me that we should go ahead and use her, after all, other ingredients for the rituals are ready.”
The suspect said he regretted his actions.
“If I knew it would end up like this I would not have gotten myself involved in the act. My advice to those who don’t want to wait for their time is that, they should please wait for their time.”
A relative of the deceased, Sunday Olatunbosun, insisted that the family wants justice.
“We want justice for Sofiat and I am speaking on behalf of the family, all what we want is justice, nothing else.
“Her mother is in a very critical situation, even we needed to give her sleeping pills before she was able to sleep.
“Her father was late and the situation of her mother is very critical at the moment. We need to take her away from Abeokuta to Ifo area because of the incident.”
The police spokesperson, Abimbola Oyeyemi, while parading the suspects, blamed the incident on bad parenting and urged religious leaders to ensure they play relevant roles towards restoring culture of hard work and morals into the society.
“This can only be described as superlative degree of callousness, it is despicable and it is barbaric at this time for somebody to still have it in mind that until they use the life of a human being like them before they can get money.
“And more so, what is it that teenagers want to use money for that will lead them to this type of heinous crime, it is still beyond the comprehension of normal human being.
“I want to advise that many parents have failed in their responsibilities, this is a result of bad parenting, it is a result of complete failure of parental responsibility because if this thing has not been encouraged by the parents, I do not believe that any properly brought up child will want to embark on this type of criminality.
“I also want to advise that the generality of our people, they have a lot of work to do, the religious body, entertainment body and everybody that has one thing or the other on protecting lives and properties.