On Friday 21st February 2014, a high court judge, Justice Lateefat Okunu sentenced convicted killer Akolade Arowolo to death by hanging for the murder of Titilayo Arowolo. The judgement followed years of judicial proceedings during which the defendant denied the killing, insisting the deceased inflicted the fatal injuries on herself during a domestic dispute.
The incident happened on the 24th of June 2011 at the couple’s residence in Isolo after which the defendant disappeared before being found days later.
The court heard that the victim had been stabbed up to 76 times by a sharp object. A forensic pathologist, Professor John Obafunwa, who gave evidence at the trial testified that the injuries could not have been self inflicted.
Family members of the deceased including her father, sisters and step-mother were present in court for the sentencing.
Man protests his Innocence
In a video by Channels TV capturing the killer as he was led outside court, Arowolo protests his innocence, sobbing while clutching two copies of the bible close to his chest. The convicted murderer slumped on the floor outside court sobbing and speaking in tongues.
Watch clip here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wejq-EofNsM
This is neither here nor there but he also appeared to have gained weight significantly since his incarceration in prison, one can’t help but wonder how someone who was supposedly in jail (and we all know how Nigerian prisons are) could come out looking healthier than he did before going in, especially when you’re accused of murder.
We’re just glad justice has finally been served. Hopefully, the family of the deceased can now have some closure and cherish the great memories of Titilayo in their hearts.
One must also applaud the efforts of various non governmental organisations who spoke up against domestic violence and vowed to ensure that Titilayo got justice.
NaijalivingUK spoke to a former colleague of Titi’s who worked with her in Skye Bank before moving to the UK. The friend, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told us that Titi was a great person. She was quiet and easy going and contrary to the defendant’s claim, would never hurt a fly. The friend also went on to say that the deceased had turned up to work on a couple of occasions, sporting bruises around her body. When asked by colleagues how she came by said bruises, Titi would tell them she had a minor accident on a commercial bike or something.
Nigeria has one of the highest rates of domestic violence in Africa. According to a womens rights charity; More than two thirds of Nigerian women are believed to experience physical, sexual and psychological abuse at the hands of their husbands.
A small-scale study conducted in the Lagos and Oyo states revealed that nearly 65 percent of educated women said they had been beaten by a partner, boyfriend or husband, while 56 percent of lower-income market women experienced similar violence. Source: http://www.havenrefuge.org.uk/index.php/about-the-haven/international-projects/nigeria
Let’s hope that other women speak up against domestic abuse or at least seek help so we can avoid tragic cases such as this.
If you’re experiencing domestic violence in the UK or you know someone who is, there are many organisations in the UK that can give helpful advice and support.
Refuge is a charity dedicated to helping suffering domestic abuse, it’s a 24 hour helpline and it’s totally confidential. You can contact refuge on 0808 2000 247
The Haven Wolverhampton is another women’s charity offering help and advice to women suffering domestic violence. Their 24 hour hotline is 08000194400.
Please don’t suffer in silence, seek help now.