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Human Sacrifices & Ritual Killings In Nigeria Caused By Witch Doctors, Herbalists & Juju Men


Human Sacrifices & Ritual Killings In Nigeria Caused By Witch Doctors, Herbalists & Juju Men

human sacrifices in nigeria

April 8, 2014 – Human Sacrifices & Ritual Killings In Nigeria Caused By Witch Doctors, Herbalists & Juju Men

Less than two weeks (March 2014) after the discovery of the forest of horror in Soka, Ibadan, Oyo State where a house was discovered littered with human body parts, imprisoned men and women and a cellar full of skulls and skeletons, a similar forest was discovered in Ogun State. An underground cell suspected to be a ritualists’ operation base was uncovered at Iyana Egbado village in Ewekoro Local Government Area of the State.

Ritual killing is a nation wide phenomenon, not restricted to one part nor is it the purview of any ethnic group nor indeed peculiar to traditional religion adherents. And indeed, some Nigerians have exported this satanic practice outside the shores of the country.

In September 2001, British Police recovered the mutilated body of a boy, which they then named “Boy Adam” floating in the River Thames, near Tower Bridge in London. The police suspected that Adam might have been a victim of ritual killing. And forensic examination revealed that Adam lived in Nigeria. They took samples of grains of sand in Adam’s intestine and traced these to a city in the southern part of Nigeria. In July 2004, after pain staking forensic and detective work, the British Police arrested a 37-year-old Nigerian, Sam Onogigovie (in Dublin), and twenty-one other Nigerians in Britain in connection with the murder of Adam.

On November 11, 2010, Leo Igwe, IHEU’s (INTERNATIONAL HUMANIST AND ETHICAL UNION) representative for West and Southern Africa, raised the issue of ritual killing and human sacrifice at the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights.

Years before then, in 1996, the police in the southern Nigerian city of Owerri arrested a man, Innocent Ekeanyanwu, with the head of a young boy, Ikechukwu Okonkwo. It transpired that Innocent was part of a syndicate working for a Chief Duru, aka “Otokoto”.

In Calabar, two men plucked out the eyes of a young lady, Adlyne Eze, for money-making ritual. In Onitsha, Anambra State, two young men, Tobechukwu Okorie and Peter Obasi, cut off a boy’s sexual organ for ritual purposes.

In Kaduna, Danladi Damina was arrested after he exhumed the corpse of a 9-year-old boy, plucked out his eyes and cut off his lips, intending to use them for ritual purposes. In Warri, Delta State, a woman was caught dismembering a four-year-old boy for charms. In Mbaise, Imo State an 18-year-old girl, identified as Chioma, was murdered by suspected ritualists.

In Benin City, Edo State three young businessmen, Henry Nwoke, Uche Ajujo and Chinedu Okonkwo allegedly murdered their friend, (28 year old), Eze Nwoke for money rituals.

On August 5, 2004, in Okija a city in Ihiala LGA, Anambra State in Nigeria and one of the biggest towns in Igboland, Nigerian Police recovered as many human skulls and corpses at the notorious Okija shrine. Many top politicians were reported to be members of this den of ritual killers. And indeed some Christian church members visited the shrine for unknown reasons.

Other such shrines, where human sacrifices and ritual killings were perpetrated were discovered in various hamlets around Abakaliki. When police raided these shrines, “…83 corpses including 63 headless bodies and 20 skulls were recovered” (Newswatch, October 11, 2004, p.20).

The causes.

That we are a deeply occult and or superstitious people is indubitable, and regardless of the ever expanding number of churches and mosques, Nigerians still believe fervently and in the most profoundly entrenched manner in juju and the power of juju to bring wealth, husband, wife, promotion, political fortunes, job, promotion at work, victory over enemies, a booming business, the establishment of a lucrative church with well heeled members of congregation, success in 419 (fraud) escapades etc etc.

In fact, at the last election, the current President, Jonathan Goodluck, rode to victory, not on the strength of previous glorious stint in public office, but majorly on the basis of superstitious belief in his “divine gift” to attract good luck to himself. We reasoned that since he seems to be attaining one high office after the other simply by luck, he deserves to be President. And that just exemplifies our predilection as a people.

It is superstition and practices steeped in custom. “…traditionalists have it that in some parts of the country (Nigeria) hunchbacks are used for purification rites, to cleanse a community and make it peaceful, while albinos are used for fame and powers. Also hunchbacks are used for first time money making rituals, and dwarfs are used for rituals to attain political position”

And aside from our deeply ingrained superstitious and occult beliefs, we have a strong penchant for gaining unfair advantages over others. So in exams, football matches, political challenges, elections, winning of contracts- in fact competitions of any kind, mundane or of high importance, we always want to have an unfair and undue advantage or head start on our fellow competitors. And we will do whatever it takes, fair or foul (usually foul) to achieve and to attain this. And turning to the occult to gain that extra lee-way is usually our way.

And with the worsening economic climate and the resulting arduous existence and plummeting of the peoples’ standard of living, more desperation manifests amongst the have-nots and even greater avarice is generated amongst the haves. And, concomitantly, there is an exponential growth in the pursuit of religious and ritualistic short cuts by Nigerians as a salve to their sorry situation or to make themselves even richer.

The ritual killing chain and sequence.

No one goes to a medical doctor seeking a cure for an ailment and take with them, unsolicited by the doctor, syringes, tablets, ointments and what have you. Rather you go to the doctor, state your condition, he or she will diagnose your ailment and then makes a prescription for suitable medication.

So it is with herbalist, babalawos and juju-men. Assuming a politician, hell bent on winning that juicy governorship seat and who is willing and ready to do what it takes, visits the babalawo recommended by his peers or whosoever. He, the juju man, reads the politician’s desperation, and he knows that asking him to bring a chicken and a goat (like his forbears used to do) will scarcely make the politician believe that he is going to make him that all powerful portion that will make him invincible to his enemies and which will make him win that election, deservedly or un-deservedly.

So, the witch-doctor asks the politician to bring the hump on the back of a male hunch back and the two breast of a female albino and the skull of a baby boy.

The politician then commissions a body parts merchant (Who exists solely and only because herbalists make their trade possible, after all, cannibalism, thank God, is not a common practice in Nigeria).

The body parts merchant then commissions the kidnappers and the killers who then finds an hunchback, an albino and a baby, kidnaps and kills them and hands over the required body parts to the body merchant. The division of labour in this evil and demonic trade sometime overlaps with the body part merchant doing the kidnapping and the killing, but usually it is maintained.

Once the required body parts are attained, the body part merchant gets paid and gives the macabre objects to the politician, or delivers them directly to the babalawo who then, on payment, proceeds to concoct his vile potion and charms. If the politician does win, he believes that the charm has worked, if he loses, the witch-doctor will simply convince him that his opponents must have used stronger juju. Of course there is no refund, in fact another round of leading by the nose ensues with the babalawo asking for even more bizarre and gruesome body parts and even more payment. Millions of naira exchange hands in this horrific, savage and bestial chain of events.

Now, who sits atop this pile of evil? Not the politician, not the body part merchants, not the kidnappers and not the killers, rather, like a doctor sits atop the health system chain, it is the herbalists and the witch doctors. Evil and evil to the core, milking the superstition, the gullibility, the desperation, the greed, the inhumanness, the anger, the vengefulness of the clients to the core for their own pecuniary needs!

The Solution


In preparation for this article, I sounded a few opinions as per solutions.

Some suggested that Nigerians needed to be re-educated as per the fallacy of their beliefs in occult practices and superstitions. And I say, that will take the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ to achieve that feat. So that is not a solution. And I am not prepared to undertake an exercise as fruitless as looking for a virgin on a maternity ward bed.

Others suggested that Nigerians need to be educated in being more wary and aware of their surroundings. If the passengers in a vehicle look suspicions do not enter the vehicle, let people know where you are going and where you are, and that sort of thing. All well and good and reasonable advise, alas, still not a solution.

Except we all would have armed body guards following us every where, then people are still susceptible and prone to falling into the traps and clutches of these malevolent forces. For example, one of those found in the house of horror in Ibadan was kidnapped from the fore-court of her house, bundled into a car and driven off. Imagine a deserted street where most people have gone to work of school and an aged relative is sitting relaxing in the fore-court, and it will not seem so improbable.

Some have suggested the creation of more jobs to steer away desperate youths from turning into body part merchants, kidnappers and murderers. Indeed, creating more jobs will benefit society and will provide opportunities to earn a living for people who believe in hard work as a means of improving their lot in life. However, for the miscreant with a get rich quick mentality, a N30,000 job per month will hardly tempt him away from the filthy lucre of his bloody and barbaric trade in body parts would it?

The Real Solution.

As I have postulated on different fora, the “solution” to the incessant cases of trade in human body parts and kidnaps and ritual murder and killings that go with it is quite simple. However, more often than not, in our country, simple solutions elude and pass us by.


If you stop the witchdoctors, the herbalists, the babalawos, the juju-man that are demanding body parts from their customers for one fetish portion or the other, you will, in effect, kill off the supply. In other words, kill the demand and thus kill the supply.

Now, assuming I was in a position of power, say as President or as a Governor (the power brokers of Nigeria and the lords of all that they survey), this is what I will do.

1. Appoint an adviser on Occult and Supernatural matters. He or she will be a well respected and highly knowledgeable practitioner of traditional divinity and medicine.

2. His or her main and foremost task will be to compile the names of all traditional medicine practitioners in my state (if I am governor), or in each state (if I am the President). He or she will have as many assistants and resources required to undertake this task. The security vote that I will have at my disposal will come in handy here.

3. He or she will then issue an invite on my behalf summoning the practitioners to a meeting with me. Allowances will be paid to all attendees as the carrot. The stick, for non attendees, will be an unofficial harassment and disruption of their work by law enforcement agents. (They will not want that).

4. Come the day of the meeting, there will be only one and one agenda on the table:- Ritual killing.

5. My pitch will be this, word for word-

a) “My fathers and my mothers, my brothers and my sisters, you are practitioners of a noble profession. A profession that predates you, a profession that predates me. A profession handed over from generation to generation by our forbears and which you too will pass on and hand over to generations yet unborn.

b) However, in recent times, many of you have chosen to betray the tenets of this noble profession. You have bastardised it and you have belittled it. How? By engaging in and encouraging murderous practices for matters which your forebears, my forebears would have severely and severally frowned on.

c) I do not need to educate nor sermonise to you the fact that human sacrifices used to be a cultural practice of our fore fathers and mothers for matters that has to do with the wider good of say community peace and harmony or protections. Or as an offering to a deity, as part of a religious ritual to appease the Gods. Human sacrifices for such community purposes are never taken lightly and human blood is scarcely spilled wantonly and recklessly. These practices have since died down and are few and far between. Needless to say, it will count as murder punishable by death in modern day Nigeria were it to take place.

d) Alas, what we have seen, and with increasing regularity and worsening acts of brutality, are ritual killings for no other purpose than for people, your clients, to obtain personal and selfish ends in any field of human endeavour that you can think of! (I will show slides of skeletons, skulls, mutilated and decomposed bodies at this juncture: with all the graphic and gory details).

e) They, your clients, procure body parts, solely and wholly at your behest, for you to undertake the preparations of charms and concoctions for them to attain that job, secure that political office, win that land case, turn their husband’s first wife mad, make their church a successful money spinning business, kill their business partner, make then filthy rich without having to lift a finger and so on and so forth.

f) Is that the purpose that your forebears, people with respect for the sanctity of human lives, intended for you to turn the noble profession that they handed over to you? Desecrating human lives for such ignoble and reprehensible causes? Cheapening the lives of beings created by “Eledumare” and turning them into mere objects to satisfy immoral and decadent desires in the most depraved and degenerate manner? You are not serving any lofty community or religious purposes but just satisfying lust for material things and amoral pursuits.

g) Now, I am aware of the fact that you have to make profit in your trades, that you have to make money to send your children to school, cater for your wives, sustain your families and build houses, buy cars and so on. The fact that you all are working for your money, rather than killing an albino or a new born baby and using one part of their bodies or the other to prepare a charm that will fill your own bank accounts with money magically and mysteriously, appear to elude your clients, yet they believe that you can do just that for them. But their belief is not my business. My business, as President or Governor (as the case may be) is to secure the lives of every single citizen of this country or state. And no one, but no one, deserves to die, slaughtered and butchered with less dignity than a fowl, simply because someone else wants to become richer or to attain a political post or contract etc by supernatural means rather than by hard work or on merit.

h) Therefore, I am asking you today to cease asking your clients to obtain body parts for you to undertake fetishes and charms for them.

i) Without you asking them to bring those body parts, they will not. And without them asking body part merchants to secure body parts for them, kidnapping of people and the murdering of them for ritual purposes will stop. And stop it must.

j) Now, that you cease asking your clients to bring body parts of humans for ritual purposes need not harm, hinder not hamper your trade in any way, and that is not my purpose. My sole purpose is to secure the lives of our citizens who daily have to contend with the inimical and dire state of living of our country as it is talk less of having to contend with the alarmingly increasing likelihood of your clients kidnapping and hacking off their body parts.

k) By all means, continue with your trades, but rather than body parts, ask them to bring goats, chickens, gold, diamond even, water from the top of a volcano and the juice of a cactus farmed in the Sahara desert in the middle of the night, but in the name of “Eledumare” and all the deities of our forefathers, stop asking them to bring body parts and humans. And you can still charge them as much as you used to when you asked them to bring body parts, maybe even more since you might need to do even more work and to invoke even more spirits than when you were using body parts. At least that is what you will tell them.

l) Be rest assured that we are able to determine shrines where body parts of any type might have been used, even without finding bodies, bones or skulls. All traces of human blood and fragments of human body parts are hard to remove entirely from the soil or any surfaces that they might have come in contact with. Should the practice continue, we will undertake such tests and whosoever is found to have engaged in the use of body parts in their shrine will face the full wrath of the law which, on guilt being proven, would be death by hanging or other prescribed means.

m) May the Gods of our forbears protect the citizens of this land from their fellow citizens who feel that they have the right to take lives that they cannot create for financial gains and unfair advantages.

n) I thank you all for attending. Please collect your envelopes with your allowances on your way out.


Lastly, I will make good my threat at the next instance of ritual killing and will undertake forensic tests of shrines within my area of jurisdiction ready to prosecute those found with DNA traces and or other evidence (skulls, bones, human flesh) etc in their shrines.

Now, this is not a task for the faint hearted, and I am not saying that it is. But, Orkija shrine was demolished, the house in Ibadan has been demolished on the orders of the Governor, citizens have burnt down places that such gruesome findings have been found. Chief Vincent Duru’s Otokoto Hotel, his Piano Plaza and stores and so on were razed to the ground by irate mobs in Owerri.

As such, as number one citizen of the state or country, no sacrifice (pardon the pun) is too great to stop this backward, barbaric and bestial act. And one needs to just be a man rather than a coward fearing death at every turn, or else what is the purpose of leadership that cannot stand up for the people that one is supposed to lead? This tremulousness is the hall mark of most of our so called leaders.

One or two prosecutions and executions of herbalist that are caught asking for and using body parts will send a clear cut message to all of them that I do mean business.

Alas, Nigeria is a country of talk and more talk by those in power with very little action, thus in all probability, ritual killings will continue unabated and no one will even think of considering talk less of implementing or trying the simple solution as stated in this write up.

These are my views, and you are very welcome to share and to disseminate them. Needless to say, you are welcome to yours.

Eric Olayinka Ayoola. Bsc. LLB. London. UK. Email-



  1. Jakande Abiola

    April 8, 2014 at 10:06 AM

    The most brilliant piece of the year
    my question is why can’t those jujumen request for animal body part why must it be human

  2. Tara

    April 8, 2014 at 12:39 PM

    The solution to the ritual killings which I think will be by providing basic social amenties to the people like good education (free), jobs, affordable houses and cars, constant light,water supply and good roads. If all these things are in place I think it will reduce the ritual killings, Let everybody engaged in one job or the other (legitimate job). The so called rich people should assist the poor around them but not oppressing them.

    • b.taiwo

      April 8, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      @Tara,God bless you,you are indeed a reasonable person….

  3. chichi

    April 8, 2014 at 4:30 PM

    All in the quest of money. Iniquity is increasing every day, oh God have your way in this our country, Nigeria.

  4. D Hunter

    April 9, 2014 at 11:32 AM

    Dis is nt just a brilliant piece bt GOLDEN, most revealn n comprehensive piece so far read on dis site dis Yr.
    Just hope our corrupt leaders r readn dis… Big tnx 2 Eric Olayinka, d writer 4 his indept undstndn n courage 2 stand n speak up against a trend of corruption dat‘s flowing 2ru d con3 lk rivers of water. Big ups Mr. Eric. D Hunter loves you.

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