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Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Before Killing My Brother, She Told Me They Were Having Challenges – Witness,

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The brother to the lawyer, Symphorosa Otike-Odibi murdered by his wife, Udeme, on Wednesday told a Lagos State High Court sitting in Igbosere that the accused person had once complained to him that she and the deceased were having challenges in their marriage.

Chijioke Akukuma, who is a prosecution witness in the on- going trial of Udeme for murdered, also told the court that she also complained that her late husband was not supportive and was having an affair.

The accused person, who is also a lawyer was arraigned before the court by the Lagos State government on a two count charge of murder and Misconduct with regard to a Corpse.

The Prosecuting counsel, Babatunde Sunmonu, informed the judge that the accused person allegedly murdered her 50 year old husband at their residence, on May 3, 2018, at their resident.

The lawyer also claimed that the defendant allegedly threatened her husband with a knife and eventually stabbed him to death and went further to mutilate his body, by cutting off his private part.

According to Sunmonu, the offence of murder is contrary to Section 223 and punishable by death, while Misconduct with regard to a Corpse contrary to Section 165(b) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State 2015 punishable with 5years imprisonment.

She, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

At the resumed hearing of the matter on Wednesday, Akukuma, who is the sixth prosecution witness, said he was at the Airport, when he was called on the phone by my wife that his elder brother Symphorosa has been killed by his wife.

The witness also testified that Udeme had earlier came to his house a week earlier, when she told him that Symphorosa was not supportive to her, and that when she wanted to go into business, he did not supportive her.

Akukuma, who was testifying before Justice Adedayo Akintoye, further claimed that Udeme also said she didn’t like the pornography pictures that her husband’s friends were sending to him on the social media platform, WhatsApp.

He said after Udeme complained to him, he counselled her and advising her to go United kingdom to take care of her health and give him the opportunity to talk to Symphorosa.

“When I spoke with my brother about the issues, he said that he had been trying to make the marriage work, he said that one of the things that made him mad was that she (Udeme), sent a message to one of his friend’s wife about his affairs, he said that was extremely bad,” the witness stated.

He also said that the deceased told him that he was no longer interested in the marriage.

The witness further told the court that around 3am on the day of the murder, a call came in from Charles his brother in-law, who told him that Udeme’s mum called him that something was happening at their house.

He said that they tried to call his brother house but there was no response, so they sent one of the neighbour, who went there but also got no response.

During cross examination by the defendant’s lawyer, Oluseye Bamijoko, the witness said that the first impression he got from Udeme, was that she wanted the marriage to work, but she later told him sometime in December 2017 that she was no longer interested in the marriage.

He also said that though Symphorosa could be very stubborn, but that he was never violent, because if he was, the accused person would have told him.

Earlier a housemaid, Blessing Austin, told the court that in December, 2017, when she went to clean the deceased and defendant’s room, she’s saw the couple’s wedding picture turn and thrown into the dust bin.

She said, “On December 4, 2017, the accused person travelled outside the country and came back in April, during Easter. Since she came back her character changed towards her husband, she wasn’t cooking for him, she cooks only her food and her husband buys his own food”.

The witness who is the fifth prosecution witness said that she cleans the deceased and defendant’s house twice a week, on Tuesdays and Saturdays adding that her resumption time was 8am and closes at 8pm.

“On 28 of April when I came to clean their house, I heard when Udeme, started quarrelling with her husband that why did he send his daughter to school outside the country, my madam, later told my oga that he should lower his voice that I was downstairs, so I could no longer hear their argument when they lowered their voices.

“After I had finished cleaning the house, Oga Sym… paid me my salary and said I should not come again that he and Udeme were traveling outside the country that he will call me back to tell me when to resume.”

Justice Akintoye adjourned the case till November 20, for continuation of trial.
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