March 3, 2024

Woman, youth president get life imprisonment for plotting to kill landlord

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A mother of five children, Mrs Idongesit Emmanuel Udo and the Secretary of Oko lta Village Council in Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, Joseph Ekpo Atai are to spend the rest of their lives in prison custody for the murder of one Ikenna Emeka.

They were convicted and sentenced by the High Court of Akwa Ibom State, Ibiono Ibom Judicial Division, presided over by Justice Bassey Nkanang.

The first convict, 47-year-old Udo, a native of Asang Enyong in the Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State and married in Ibiono Ibom is said to have paid the late Emeka and one Nelson Akaninyene Edet from Ekput in Okoita N40,000 to kill her landlord, Emaeyak Kenneth James.

Upon failure to carry out the unlawful contract, Mrs Udo and the second convict, Joseph Ekpo Atai were said to have hired thugs to beat Nelson Akaninyene Edet and Ikenna Emeka and in the process, Emeka was stabbed to death while Edet later died after testifying in court.

The particular case shows that Edet and Emeka had a master-apprentice relationship in the business of cutting and selling timber and wood in Okoita, Ibiono Ibom, where the convict, Udoh was their customer.

It was learnt that to recover her N40,000, the mother of five who is married to a man from Ibiono Ibom had reported to the second convict, Joseph Ekpo Atai as the Secretary of Oko lta Village Council and Youth President of the village who sent thugs to bring the two to her residence, where youths in the community beat them.

Some of those who took part in the incident that occurred on 28th April 2017 have not been found till date.

The trial judge, Justice Bassey Nkanang in a two-hour judgement, found Mrs Idongesit Emmanuel Udo and Joseph Ekpo Atai guilty of manslaughter and sentenced them to confinement for life.

The trial had commenced in Ibiono Ibom and eventually got to Uyo where Justice Bassey Nkanang delivered the judgment on extended jurisdiction upon his transfer from lbiono Ibom Judicial Division in October 2021.

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