A Plateau State High Court sitting in Jos on Thursday sentenced a 24-year-old man, Binfa Lamde, to death by hanging for killing his stepmother.
Justice A. I. Ashoms, who handed down the judgment, declared that the prosecution had proved beyond reasonable doubt that Lamde killed the woman.
Ashoms said: “Going by the facts before this court, you, Binfa Lamde, mercilessly took the life of your stepmother, Kum Zwade, in cold blood.
“This sentence is mandatory; the law states that any person convicted of murder shall be punished with death by hanging.
“The sentence of this court upon you is that you will be hanged until you are dead.’’
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the convict was first arraigned on July 14, 2014, charged with culpable homicide, contrary to section 221 of the Penal Code, and punishable with death upon conviction.
Lamde was said to have committed the crime on April 10, 2014, when he used a machete to hack his stepmother to death.
Lamde, a resident of Ngwak village, Langtang North, in his confessional statement to the Police, said that he was at home on the said date when he heard his step sister, one Chakwai Zamde, screaming in her room.
“I ran to her and she told me she was not feeling fine. We took her to the hospital, but after several checks, we were told that nothing was medically wrong with her.
“We later took her to a native doctor, but her health condition kept deteriorating. My stepmother later confessed that she had `tied’ the sick girl through witchcraft.
“We asked her to `untie’ the girl, but she refused. My son was equally sick at that time and I felt she was also responsible. So, when my step sister died, I got very angry.
“I went into her (late stepmother)’s room, while she was sleeping, and used a machete to stab her all over her head and she died instantly,’’ the Police quoted Lamde as saying in the statement.
Counsel to the convict, David Adudu, while speaking with newsmen after the judgment, said that the capital punishment handed down on the convict was right as he was found guilty of the crime.
Adudu, however, said that he would study the judgement and appeal the death penalty.