Edith Nwokolo, who resided at 94, Mushin Road, opposite Ire-Akari Road Junction, Isolo, Lagos State, was visited by her estranged lover, Amaechi Uchenna, on February 23 around 10pm. By 11pm, Nwokolo had died in mysterious circumstances while Uchenna was still in the apartment. Nwokolo’s family members alleged that the victim was strangled by Uchenna after a failed attempt to rape her. But the police said the cause of her death had not yet been ascertained as they were still awaiting the autopsy report. The suspect is being detained at the Lagos State Criminal Investigation Department, Yaba.
PUNCH Metro learnt that the suspect, a native of Emekuku, Owerri North Local Government Area of Imo State, had informed Nwokolo that he was visiting her since they had not seen each other for long. It was learnt that although Nwokolo, who hailed from Owerri Olubor, Ika North-East Local Government Area of Delta State, acceded to his request, she told one of her relations about the proposed visit.
PUNCH Metro learnt that Uchenna and Nwokolo’s romantic relationship soured four years ago when the 40-year-old woman became pregnant for the man. Uchenna was said to have denied responsibility for the pregnancy but after intervention by their families, he accepted it. However, Nwokolo’s uncle, Mr. Emmanuel Adukpe, a computer engineer, said when Nwokolo had a baby, Uchenna abandoned her and the child. He said, “At about 1.30am on February 24, my telephone rang; and when I picked the call, for more than three seconds, there was no response. I thought it was the usual network problem. But when I attempted to cut the line, the caller uttered, ‘it is Uche on the line.’ I now asked, ‘why calling at that ungodly hour?’ “He said Edith (Nwokolo). I asked, what about her? He said, unfortunately, we have lost her. I was jolted because nothing was wrong with her. I did not know what to say again but I picked courage and went further to ask him what happened? He said, he visited Edith and that they had minor argument and she complained of chest pain and later collapsed. “He said after she collapsed, he carried her and one of her neighbours to the General Hospital, Isolo. When they got there, he claimed that the hospital referred them to a private hospital and that she died on their way to the hospital. “Then, I suspected something terrible had happened to Edith (Nwokolo). I decided not to be harsh with Uche so that he would not run away. I then thanked him for his efforts and asked him to meet me at the deceased house by 5am the next day. He agreed. Later, I called him to ask him about the corpse. He said he had deposited it in a mortuary. “By 5am, I was there waiting for him and he arrived with two of his brothers. Then, we reported the case at Okota Police Station and he was arrested along with his brothers.” Adukpe said after his arrest, the police took him to the mortuary to confirm if the corpse was there but were shocked when a mortuary attendant said Nwokolo’s corpse was not brought to the place. He said at that point, the suspect started blabbing and confessed that he left the corpse with a private ambulance driver. Nwokolo’s uncle said when they saw the driver; he told them that Uchenna had asked him to facilitate issuance of a death certificate from a private hospital before taking the corpse to a mortuary. Adukpe said, “Uchenna told me that Edith (Nwokolo) died on the way to a hospital, but the driver said the hospital demanded death certificate. That was the reason he (the driver) took him and the corpse to his brother’s hospital. “I have been reliably informed that Uchenna’s brother had confessed that his brother killed her while trying to rape her. When we opened the door, we saw Edith’s pant on the floor as well as Uche’s pair of shoes.” But the spokesman for the Lagos State Police Command, Mr. Joseph Jaiyeoba, told our correspondent on the telephone that the case was still being investigated. He said the autopsy result was not yet out and it was difficult to ascertain whether the deceased was strangled or died from natural causes. Jaiyeoba said, “The man is being held at SCID, Yaba, Lagos. The case is still being investigated. The result of autopsy is not yet out. “Preliminary investigation has not given enough evidence to ascertain the cause of death. But I can assure you that the autopsy report will soon be out.”
Culled from Punch
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