A father, Andrew Koku, who pleaded guilty to beheading his six-month-old daughter, is to spend the next 37 days in prison, an Abeokuta Chief Magistrates’ Court ruled yesterday.
Chief Magistrate Adeola Adelaja, who handed down the verdict, said the accused should remain behind bars pending advice from the state Director of Public Prosecution.
Koku, a resident of Were Village near Obada-Oko in Abeokuta, who is being tried for murder, had entered a guilty plea. According to the police prosecutor, Sunday Eigbejiale, the accused committed the offence on December 24, 2017 around 6:00p.m. at Ayedere Village in Obada-Oko.
Eigbejiale alleged that the accused had beheaded his six months old daughter with a cutlass. “The accused said he decided to kill the baby because his wife was having extra-marital affairs with her ex-lover.
“He said the wife’s adulterous lifestyle angered him an he believed killing the only child, which was the only bond between him and the woman will end the marriage,” he told the court.
The offence contravened Sections 319 of the Criminal Law of Ogun, 2006. The case has been adjourned until February 23, 2018.
Meanwhile, an FCT High Court in Maitama yesterday ordered the trial-within-trial in a culpable homicide charge slammed on a 37-year-old man, Matthew Ankyoor, who allegedly killed his wife.
Justice Peter Affen, who gave the order, said it was necessary to ascertain the veracity of the statements made by the accused. Ankyoor is standing trial for allegedly beating his wife to death.
The accused, who was first arraigned on October 24, 2017, had pleaded not guilty. At the resumed hearing of the case yesterday, the prosecuting counsel, Mr. Donatus Abah, called the first prosecution witness, Inspector Raymond Isama of the Homicide section of the FCT police command.
Isama had informed the court that he visited the scene of the crime as well as Wuse General Hospital, where a pathologist removed the baby inside the womb of the deceased, Mrs. Doosuur Ankyoor. He said he took the photographs of the baby, who also died in the process of being removed from its dead mother’s womb. The photographs were admitted as exhibits.
There was a mild drama as an argument ensued between the two counsels when Abah sought to tender the accused’s statement as exhibit before the judge. The defendant’s counsel, Mr. John Godwin, had objected to its admissibility on the grounds that it was contrary to Section 29 of the Evidence Act.
Godwin said the statement was not voluntarily made by the accused, adding that he was “tortured, coerced and intimidated into writing the statement,” a motion the prosecuting counsel objected to as a ploy to delay the trial.
The judge, after entertaining the witness’ submission and arguments from both counsels, ordered a trial-within-trial to ascertain the veracity of Ankyoor’s claim. The case was adjourned until February 19.