Man connives with Native Doctor, kills his NSCDC fiancée for money ritual

By AdvocateNews on 13/06/2021

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Late Josephine Cynthia Onche
Late Josephine Cynthia Onche

The remains of a 45-year-old Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) female operative who was murdered days before her wedding in 2019 has been found. 

The deceased, Josephine Cynthia Onche's remains were found buried in a shallow grave at Adum Obi Local Government Area of Benue State on May 27, 2021.

When she went missing, her brother, Doctor Onche, lodged a complaint against her fiancé, Christopher Akpan, suspecting him of having a hand in her disappearance.

Akpan and Cynthia’s wedding ceremony before her disappearance was fixed for December 20, 2021.

She left her base in Benue State to Akwa Ibom State to visit Akpan for the final planning of their wedding, but never returned to her base.

Days after her failure to return from her journey, her family members were said to have put several calls to Akpan but none of their calls were answered or returned instead, Akpan was allegedly to have changed his phone number making it difficult for Cynthia’s family members to reach him on phone again.

A petition by the worried family members of the missing lady led to the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Alkali Baba, drafting operatives of the Force Intelligence Response Team (IRT), led by a Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), Abba Kyari, to find out what happened to the woman.

During investigation, investigators discovered Cynthia last communication with her phone was in the house of a native doctor identified as Afolabi Rafiu Akin, residing at Adum in Obi Local Government Area of Benue State. Further investigations showed that he hurriedly vacated his house and relocated to Oyo State.

IRT men later arrested Akpan, arraigned him in a court and later remanded in prison custody.

However, throughout his arrest, interrogation and subsequent arraignment, Akpan had persistently maintained that he didn’t know the whereabouts of Cynthia. Akin, the native doctor, was later tracked to Ogun State and arrested.

He told police that Akpan shot and killed Cynthia because he wanted to use her for money ritual.

He alleged that the blood of Cynthia from the gunshot hole in her skull was collected in a calabash to be used later for money ritual for Akpan.

Akpan had allegedly lured Cynthia to a bush after telling her that prayers should be done, so that she would not end up dying like his first wife.

Akin told police that Akpan had also used his late wife for money rituals.

Following Akin’s confession, police got a court order and brought Akpan out of the Makurdi Correctional Centre where he was remanded.

The two men would later lead police to Edi-Anyoga Forest in Adum, where the decomposed body of Cynthia was retrieved from a shallow grave.

Akpan, 57, a father of five, who is into buying and selling of mortar and pestles, said that his wife died some years ago.

Aside from being an NSCDC official, Cynthia was also a trader. She has a workshop at Otukpo in Benue State, where she produced mortar and pestles in large quantities.

She used to take the items to Enugu State, where Akpan resided, to supply to him.

He said: “We became friends and she made sure I ate whenever I was around in Benue State. One thing led to another and we became lovers.”

Despite the evidence, Akpan denied killing Cynthia but fingered the native doctor for her murder. ‘‘Akin killed Cynthia and then decided to frame me. I don’t even have his phone number. Police should check my contact list,” he said.

Akin, 67, married with three wives, said only one of his wives was still alive. He said that he was not just a native doctor, he was also a farmer.

He confessed to have first met Cynthia in 2019 when she came to his shrine requesting him to help make her business to flourish.

He further confessed that he collected N14, 000 for the job and that it was in the process that he knew more about her and met Akpan, whom she was to marry.

Akin said that when Akpan got to know of his vocation, he requested him to help him with money ritual to enable him get rich, confiding in him however he had earlier used his late wife for money ritual, which failed.

According to Akin: ‘‘He promised to give me N5 million for my silence. The man lied to Cynthia that they needed to perform a sacrifice so that what happened to his late wife wouldn’t happen to her. He had a calabash with a python, pigeon and soup.

‘‘I took him to the forest where he set the three on fire. He gathered the ashes and put it in the calabash and we left. We agreed to meet there around 10pm that same day.

At about 10pm, he came there with Cynthia. I never knew he had a gun with him. He brought a cloth, spread it on the ground and asked her to kneel down for prayers. Before I could understand what was going on, he shot her on the head. He quickly grabbed the calabash and collected the blood gushing out from her head.

‘‘Next, he attempted to set the body on fire, but I stopped him. I told him that the smoke could attract the villagers, but the gunshot would be viewed as that of a hunter.

"I ran home and got a hoe; we dug a shallow grave and buried her. He carried the calabash, Cynthia’s handbag and left.

"When I got home, I asked him to bring the N5 million, which he had promised me, but he promised to do so in eight days’ time. He came to my house later that night and gave me only N50, 000.”

Posted 13/06/2021 12:54:42 PM

 

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