THE increasing rate of unsolved murder cases in Nigeria is a real source of concern to most of the citizenry in recent times. Murder is simply the willful but unlawful killing of a human being by another human being or a group of people.
Over the years, murder cases of both prominent and ordinary Nigerians, sometimes induced by outright armed robbery, religious, ideological, economic, military, or political purposes, have remained largely unsolved.
The murders of Bola Ige, Harry Marshall, Chimere Ikoku, Ayodeji Daramola, Dele Arojo, Isyaku Muhammadu, Janet Oladapo, Ahmed Pategi, Victor Nwankwo, John Nunu, Funsho Williams, Udo Marcus Akpan, Ogbonnaya Uche, Theodore Agwatu, Emily Omop, Abigail and Barnabas Igwe, Jerry Agbeyegbe, Sunday Ugwu and Momoh Lawal amongst numerous others have gone unresolved.
Sadly, apart from these eminent people, are dozens of other Nigerians killed in cold blood. It is also regrettable to note that other journalists have received some of the hardest hits in the country. Of course, still fresh in people’s memories were the dastardly killings of Dele Giwa, Nathan Dabak, Bolade Fasasi, Modu Gubio, Enenche Akogwu, Tunde Oladepo, Okezie Amaruben, Fidelis Ikwuebe, Nansok Sallah, Edo Sule Ugbagwu, and Bayo Ohu, among others. All these murders were callous and inconceivably horrendous.
Again, there are unanswered questions about who killed numerous other people who could have contributed to Nigeria’s progress in their areas of influence. In view of the high number of murder mysteries in the country, it is instructive that the somewhat puzzling on-going case of one murder, two government agencies, different sets of suspects allegedly involved in the murder of Mr. Olaitan Oyerinde, the Principal Secretary to Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole, be handled with an utmost sense of responsibility.
Curiously, the investigating agencies are purportedly holding two different sets of suspects on the same case. While the Edo Police Command reportedly has some suspects, including a human rights activist in custody, the State Security Service is as well holding “an entirely different set of suspects it labelled armed robbers” at its headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT). This is no doubt, a fertile ground for an endless muddle that could perhaps, see questions into the murder in Edo State go unanswered, in the end.
This unfolding development is unacceptable, as it yet, appears to vindicate claims in certain quarters, that Nigerian security agencies are rather inept at getting to the root of murder cases and ensure justice for the victims’ families.
All should realise that human lives are sacrosanct and should be valued. A country where one’s life can be snuffed out at any given moment is unquestionably not an ideal clime to encourage creativity, empower people to create wealth, achieve sustainable socio-economic and political development, and ultimately attract the much-needed Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
It is time to wipe the slate clean and erase the notion that murders go unsolved.
Otherwise, perpetrators of such horrendous crimes are empowered by the knowledge that they will not face justice; while would-be criminals are emboldened to conduct nefarious activities, without fear of being apprehended.
That is why the security agencies need to intensify efforts at unravelling the mysteries behind these several unsolved murder cases, round up and prosecute the killers in order to serve as a deterrent to potential murderers in future. After all, these murderers are not ghosts but real human beings living in society midst.