Rabi Shu’aibu is a 40-year-old woman who is now a widow. Her late husband, Usman Muhammed, was allegedly killed ironically by his namesake, a man named Usman Abubakar Saba after an argument. She told Daily Trust Saturday how the conflict started.
How did the incident happen?
The house we live in is a rented apartment. My husband did a lot of renovation in the house and the money he spent was calculated and it amounted to about six years rent. There is a well in the house but there was no machine to pump the water, so my husband bought a water pumping machine. Water was then sold to people and someone was in charge. That person later left and Usman Abubakar was brought in to be in charge of selling the water. Trouble, however, started when the machine started to have problems and Usman would always come to my husband to repair the machine. My husband always obliged him anytime he requested for money for repairs, until things became tough for him (my husband) and he one day told Usman to fix the machine since he also makes money from selling water.
After two days, we saw Usman trying to start the machine to pump water and we knew he had repaired the machine.
However, when my husband tried to fetch water for our apartment, we found out that he had disconnected us and we insisted that he reconnect us and that is how their argument started.
- Meet Nigeria’s top female content creators
- 2023 Elections: Nigeria’s fate in the hands of their lordships
What happened afterward?
Even though my husband spoke to Usman to reconnect us, he refused. One morning, he came into the house and took my bucket and broom and went upstairs to wash the water tank. He was wearing only a transparent short, and his private part was visible. My husband then asked him to stop coming into the house dressed like that, but Usman insisted that it was their house as well. My husband tried to make him understand that we rented the place and so he (Usman) had no right to come to his space dressed like that again, and that was how another quarrel started until they were separated by neighbours.
This happened on Sunday evening, February 19.
The next day, Usman saw my children who were preparing for school and started throwing stones at them. He then jumped into our house with a knife and cut our door net. By then, I had chased the children into the house. When my husband saw this, he wanted to open the door, but I refused.
Usman kept throwing stones and yelling, ‘Come out and let’s kill ourselves, one of us must die today’.
My husband eventually opened the door and as he stepped out, the suspect attacked him and started to bite him while squeezing his testicles.
People tried to come in to intervene, but the gate was locked. So, someone jumped into the house and tried to separate them. As he pulled the suspect away from my husband, my husband fell to the ground with blood coming out of his chest. When I noticed that, I held the killer, but some people said I should let him go.
Afterwards, my husband was taken to a nearby hospital where he was confirmed dead.
Did you contact the police?
Of course, when the incident happened, the police from their office in Isokoko, Agege, came to inspect the body and took some notes, while looking for the suspect, who was on the run at that time. Wherever he was supposed to be found was checked, but he was not seen. Later, his relatives called him on the phone and asked him where he was, he told them that he was at a motor park going to Bida, in his hometown in Niger State. They tricked him and said they knew he had no money with him, so he should come to the palace of Sarkin Nupe in Agege to collect money. He came to the palace, where he was held and handed over to the police at Isokoko in Agege.
What has happened after his arrest?
Nothing happened, because his relatives did not even come to condole with us. However, I heard that his relatives and the Nupe people in Agege have asked my husband’s family for a reconciliation. They met my husband’s relatives in the company of some clerics in Agege. They said they don’t want the matter to go to court, so they want to negotiate.
What is your hope?
I hope that my husband will be given his due justice. The punishment for a murderer is murder. I am left with nine orphans to cater for all alone; the eldest among them is just 16 and the youngest a 2-year-old.
I hope the killer would be punished and the compensation for my husband’s life paid.
Daily Trust Saturday contacted the spokesman of the Lagos State Police Command, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, who confirmed the incident and said, “The suspect, Usman Abubakar, was arraigned in court on Tuesday, and later remanded in the correctional home,” he said.