A Lagos High Court, sitting in Ikeja, has sentenced one Pastor Akolade Arowolo to death for killing his wife.
Justice Lateefat Okunu, who convicted Arowolo, held that the prosecution was able to prove the allegation of murder against the convict.
The late wife, Titilayo, was a banker with Skye Bank, now Polaris Bank until she met her untimely death at the hands of her husband.
The judge maintained in her over three hours judgement that the evidence before the court proved Arowolo to be guilty of murdering his wife in their matrimonial home. He was sentenced to death by hanging.
Pastor Arowolo, a youth pastir with a pentecostal church in Lagos, who could not hold back his emotions, burst into prayers. He also fell down in the dock and began to scream ‘Jesus have mercy.’
A forensic report presented to the court by Prof. John Oladapo Obafunwa, a pathologist, was used by the court to determine that the deceased could not have stabbed herself to death, as claimed by her husband.
Arowolo had earlier claimed that the wife who was possessed, had inflicted injuries to her left eye, right eye, upper and right chest area and her collar bone. A claim that was disputed by the pathologist, who further informed the court that autopsy showed the late Titilayo was killed through 76 knife stab wounds.
Prosecution invited some of Titilayo’s family members. They testified that the couple had always had a troubled marriage. Her father, George Oyakhire, sister, Ijeh and mother, Mrs Adetoun Yeside Oyakhire, testified that their daughter and her husband had lived a cat and mouse life. They told the court that they had waded in several times, to settle quarrels and serious fights between the couple. On the day she died however, none of them was on ground to witness it.
A co-tenant to the Arowolos, Adewale Adeyemi, also testified that the couple had had a troubled marriage. He said that on the day of the incident, he heard a loud noise and when he looked from his apartment later, he saw Arowolo rushing out with a deep cut in his Palm. He asserted that he saw a hammer and a knife that had a broken handle, somewhere in the yard.
The security man at the Arowolos residence, an investigating police officer and an MTN staff, also testified against the pastor.
However, the parents of the convicted man had a contrary testimony. They said their son had always been very religious and of good behaviour. Therefore, he could not have murdered his wife as he was incapable of killing anyone.
When called upon to defend himself, the convict claimed that on the day his wife died, they had made love passionately for two hours. He said as a result of her possession by an evil spirit, she inflicted several stab wounds upon him before finally turning the knife on herself.