By TIMOTHY AGBOR/OSOGBO
Had the man responsible for a teenager’s pregnancy taken full responsibility of his action, perhaps the girl would not have thought of taken the life of the innocent child.
But the decision of her unborn child’s father to shirk his resposibilities and her inability to find regular means of livelihood has led to her taken a drastic and devilish action which eventually landed her in jail.
Thus Adeola Joseph took the dastard decision of taking the life of her daughter by burying her alive. Only divine intervention saved the life of the young girl.
The premises of a Senior Magistrate Court sitting in Osogbo, capital of Osun state where Joseph was dragged to; to answer for her criminal deed turned to a Mecca of sort when hundreds of people, many of whom were residents of the area where the ugly incident took place stormed the court to catch a glimpse of a mother who buried her 2-year-old daughter alive. The dead girl was identified as Fathia Nafiu.
The charge sheet that was read to the accused in court reads in part: “That you Adeola Joseph on the 18th of February, 2013 at Ijetu area, Osogbo, in Osogbo Magisterial district did attempt to kill one Fathia Nafiu, aged 2 by burying her alive and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 320 (1) of the Criminal Code, Cap 34 vol. II, Laws of Osun state of aNigeria, 2003.
The Police prosecutor, Inspector Solomon Oladele stated that Joseph did on the same day, place and time did attempt to commit Felony to wit murder by burying Nafiu alive adding that she did conduct herself in a manner likely to cause breach of peace when she buried her 2-year-old daughter alive.
Oladele therefore argued that Joseph had committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 509 and 249 (d) of the Criminal Code Cap 34, vol. II Laws of Osun state of Nigeria, 2003.
While presenting the fact of the case to the court, Oladele disclosed that Joseph took her child to an uncompleted building and buried Nafiu by turning her head upside down in a grave she had dug.
Luck however ran out on Joseph, according to the prosecutor, when a prophetess living in the neighbourhood sighted the mother of one leaving the uncompleted building in a very suspicious manner.
Thinking that something was fishy, the prophetess whose name was not mentioned in court went to the uncompleted building where the hapless child who was gasping for breath in the grave that was covered with stones and discovered Nafiu in a pitiable condition.
Residents of the area confirmed Nafiu to be Joseph’s daughter before she was apprehended and handed over to the police. The mother of one, who pleaded guilty to the three counts of attempted murder, felony and breach of public peace; confessed that she could not afford to take care of the poor girl after her lover, who impregnated her had denied being responsible for the pregnancy.
The defendant, who was not represented by any lawyer, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy claiming that poverty coupled with evil forces informed her cruel action against her daughter.
The presiding Magistrate, Olusola Aluko ,therefore found Joseph guilty as charged and convicted her accordingly. He expressed sadness at the act saying that Joseph is not fit to live among human beings.
“The convict does not deserve to live within human being. The act is heinous, callous and grievous for a living soul and a mother for that matter to have buried her daughter. So, the court will not be linient in sentencing her, moreover, she looks unremorseful.”
Consequently, Aluko averred that Joseph should be imprisoned for six years with hard labour. Some residents who spoke with our correspondent stated that this was not the first time Joseph had attempted taking the life of her daughter.
“She had once attempted throwing the girl into the Osun River. However some residents who saw her raised alarm and she took to her heels,” some residents told thegazellenews.com debunking insinuation that the convict may have been insane.
Residents also revealed that Joseph, a hairdressing apprentice often locks her daughter inside her room for days whenever she wants to go to work.
When asked why she wanted to kill her only daughter, Joseph said that she wanted to travel to Lagos to meet her aunt to seek greener pastures stressing that her daughter would hinder her in accomplishing her mission.