Dearth in human values- any hope?

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The killing of one Cynthia Osokogu, student at Nassarawa State University recently by two young men is just one of the too many stories nowadays that tell of gross inhumanity ravaging our world today. According to reports, Cynthia was lured by the suspects to Lagos, where they drugged, tied her up, raped her, and murdered her in a bid to rob her. Today, value for the humanity in us, a sense of morality seem to have completely died in people that some people do not trust their own family members anymore.

In the past, people valued lives. It was rare, and considered an abomination for one to kill another human being. People were abhorred for engaging in illicit sex, while abortions, adultery and such were almost unheard of. Today, parents sleep with their own children, even going as far as impregnating them. Brothers have sex with sisters, while men of God engage members not just in sex orgies, but swindle them every other day. The age has become an era of blood-letting rituals and drug trafficking, as young men and women desperately do anything now to get rich. The case is so worrisome as practically every day, there are several such stories in the news.

Only recently, 54-year-old generator repairer Mr. Tajudeen Sanni from Oyo state was reprimanded in jail for allegedly having carnal knowledge of his 16-year-old daughter and getting her pregnant in Lagos. He was first charged to the Family Court, Kakawa, Lagos where he confessed that he had slept with his daughter four times. But he denied impregnating her.

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In a similar development, a 45-year-old mechanic, Tiamiyu Ibrahim was reported to have put his mother-in-law in a family way.  According to the victim, whenever she was in the bathroom, the husband would jump in to see her nakedness, pretending to be unaware that she was in the bathroom. Explaining further, the mother said, “each time he came home for lunch, he would play pornographic films, inviting me to join him in the sitting room to watch it.” Mrs Ibrahim added, “According to my mum, while the film was going on, my husband would come to where she was sitting and grab her. Even after she had freed herself and run to the kitchen, my husband would go to meet her and that was how they started having sex.

But there are even worse cases: a 43-year old policeman, Corporal Lanre Ramoni, attached to Agbara Divisional Police  Headquarters in Ogun State, is currently being detained for being intimate with his daughter  for four years. He also aborted her pregnancy four times. His daughter (name withheld), 19, is an SSS 3 student and the only child.

In March this year, another  40-year-old man, who allegedly impregnated his 12-year-old daughter, promised to father the child if her daughter is delivered safely. Philip Ben, a native of Itam in Akwa Ibom State was interrogated at the State Criminal Investigations Department (SCID), Panti, Yaba, Lagos. The suspect and his daughter (names withheld) accused each other of being the mastermind of the heinous act.

While Philip claimed his daughter initiated the amorous affairs, the daughter claimed her father started it. The suspect shocked detectives quizzing him when he promised to father the child from his daughter because his Christian faith forbids abortion.

Pastor Emmanuel Alex who is in charge of a new generation church in Egan, a Lagos suburb, was arrested in July by the police for impregnating his 15-year-old daughter, not once but two times.

The pastor’s daughter was said to have delivered two babies for him within two years. This happened after the girl’s mother, the pastor’s wife, died.

In another bizarre development, a man in Abuja was reported to have impregnated his own three daughters.

Another such story is that of Emmanuel Oko Akpan, an incident that also happened in Lagos. He impregnated his father’s wife, Agnes Akpan, claiming he did so because he felt that his father was no longer strong enough to satisfy her sexually.

In yet another such instance, 24 year old Victor Idongesit had in March this year admitted to the police that he impregnated his neighbour’s wife.  His neighbour, 48 year old Stanley Anebor disclosed that Victor confronted him in public and told him he should not brag with his wife because he too has access to her as well.

In March too, Mr. Faseyi Adebayo was arrested for impregnating his 17 year old daughter Bisola Adebayo. Bisola who happened to be the only child said she lost her mother early 2008 when she was 14, and since then her father have been taking advantage of her. The father blamed it on the devil. Unfortunately, these are just a few cases of abominations which by today’s standards, is becoming part of the culture.

But it is not just in the area of sexual perversion that this generation have erred. People now kill a lot, they kill too much. People kill to steal, for rituals in order to get wealthy, and there are those who are hired to murder enemies. Yet others just love to shed blood- it is a sport to them. Just like in the case of Cynthia, most of the perpetrators of this evil are young people. These are some of the cases worth looking at:

In early August, Udoka Onwe was arrested by the Ebonyi State Police Command for allegedly killing his own father, Mr. Peter Onwe Elum, 60 and uncle, Mr. James Elum, 52. The suspect, who confessed to his crime, said that he decided to kill his father and uncle because they were wizards and wanted to use witchcraft to kill him, saying he killed them before they could kill him.

In July, two brothers, Omotola and Ajayi were arrested following the discovery of the decomposing body of their younger sibling, Akinbuyi, inside a room in their home at FESTAC Town, Lagos.   When the body was found, the head, hands, breasts, private part and parts of the legs were missing and this led to suspicion that the suspects might have sold them.

Just last week in a related incident, a man caught with a human skull along with a pastor in Ogun State, confessed that he needed it for rituals. The man, Matthew Akiode and Pastor Michael Oyewole, were arrested on Tuesday while exhuming a human skull at a cemetery at Sabo, Abeokuta.

Earlier in April, an Ebute Meta Chief Magistrate’s Court on Thursday in Lagos remanded two brothers in Ikoyi prisons for allegedly killing their father, a sexagenarian. The two brothers hit their father with an iron which resulted in his death during a quarrel with the man.

Three days ago, it was reported that Nwanneka Odah a 16 year-old girl was beheaded by suspected ritual killers in Anambra State. They had called her on the pretext of buying groundnuts, but slashed off her head as soon as she bent to sell. Then they ran into the bush.

In March, a five-month-old girl and her two-year-old sister were found stone dead in Calabar, Cross River State after their mother allegedly smashed their heads on the wall in the belief that they were possessed by demons. The mother was said to have believed that the demons needed such an extreme measure to be forced to vacate the bodies of the children.

The problem of killing children belived to be witchcraft is a horror that has bedeviled the Cross River and Akwa Ibom axis of the country for some years now.

Also, Aba in Abia State has become the headquarters of baby marketing. In every nook and cranny, quacks have set up maternities where they recruit Indian-hemp-smoking youths to have sex with girl they have kidnapped, drugged and kept as sex slaves. Of course, such girls get pregnant and have babies, who are sold from N250, 000 upwards, with the girl getting paid about N40, 000. However, it is not just in Aba that the police have busted such cartels.

Just last week, a 16-year-old girl who was lured to a maternity home in Okwue area of Asaba along-side other girls, narrated how they were promised N50,000 each to make babies for the operators of the home. Amarachi (surname withheld), revealed to operatives of Asaba Vigilante Group who stormed the baby factory how the operator of the home would usually invite men to get them pregnant and, upon delivery, they would each be given the sum of N50, 000 to part with the baby. She said some of the customers are ritualists.

Another victim of the baby factory operator, Chinonye Linus, 22, said the operator of the home offered to assist her when her boyfriend denied responsibility for her pregnancy, adding that she later promised to pay her N50,000 upon delivery.

In Aba last year, it was reported how 32 girls aged between 15 and 17 were rescued from Cross Foundation Clinic, a clinic used to rear babies. The babies were then allegedly sold for ritual witchcraft purposes or adoption. The UN organization for the welfare of children, Unicef, estimates that at least 10 children are sold daily across Nigeria, where human-trafficking is ranked the third most common crime after economic fraud and drug-trafficking.

Also last year, the police in Enugu arrested a doctor suspected of impregnating girls and selling their babies. Five pregnant girls aged between 12 and 17 were rescued from the clinic, while the doctor confessed to being responsible for their pregnancy.

In May, 19-year old Patience Egebor, was arrested in Lagos for allegedly stealing a five-month old boy belonging to her friend, Mrs Femi Akintunde, and selling him for N300, 000. Egebor took the police to Abuja, where the baby was recovered from the buyer after she confessed that she actually sold the boy. In April too, seven women between the ages of 18 and 20, three of whom were pregnant, were freed from a home in Akwa Ibom State after a police tip-off. According to the police, the suspects usually lure young girls to get pregnant with a promise of N70 000 after having their babies, which they sell to ritualists.

Reacting to the development, Comrade Zulu Solomon, a lecturer in Cultural Economics with African Thinkers College of Education, Enugu  stated that the perversion is a result of deviation from the ways of our forefathers: “The current state of things was strange to our ancestors and so they termed it “abominable” which is called “aru” in Igbo. It was not normal to hear of murder, rape, incest, homosexuality, ritual killing, etc in the days of forefathers. Whenever these happen, they make great effort to cleanse the land and ensure that something was done to avert a repeat in the future. Today, can we really claim to have attained greater heights than our ancestors, height that improve rather than endanger or destroy the lives of our people?”

He continues: “We have gone far away from normalcy. We have gone so far that we now regard abominations as custom. Ndi Igbo usually say that when an abominable act is allowed to last over a year, it becomes part of the culture. Should we simply continue to do the things we always did and pretend that “God himself will descend and clean up our land of all these impurities?”

“I think it is time to return to the culture and values of our ancestors. We have allowed the civilized world they left us to fall too much below brute-animal standards,” he stated.

On his part, Aderemi Phillips, a Hare Krishna monk and social analyst said: “years back, societal values revolved around simple living and higher thinking, love of God and good deeds. Such values were propagated in poetry, songs, tales, moral and religious doctrines. The abominable acts ravaging us today reflects the paradigm shift in values and consciousness. Even the sanctity of our religious sphere now radiate with the odious stench of the ‘get-rich-quick ‘syndrome. And like a soulless society, the wider section of this generation been a cumulation of ill-gotten and unwanted carnal progeny will continue to shock our conscience and imagination on a daily basis”.

Describing the present society as one lacking in civilization, Catherine Acholonu, a UN ambassador for Arts and Culture, archeologist and writer stated that “True civilization is the maintenance of a divine state of order, equity, justice and contentment in a given environment or among the members of a social group. It is a society characterized by harmony and order between heaven and earth and among the various sections of that society. Judging by these standards, our modern societies do not qualify to be called a civilization.”

SOURCE-National Mirror

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