A commercial sex worker, Mercy Ogie, has been sentenced to death by an Ado Ekiti High Court after she was found guilty of murder. In a ruling delivered by the state Chief Judge, Justice Ayodeji Daramola, Ogie was convicted of killing a two year-old, Praise Ebong.
Ogie was said to have conspired with one Efe to steal the baby at Irona area of Ado-Ekiti on November 26, 2011. The prosecution counsel, Olorunfemi Alabi, called five witnesses to prove the case against the accused person. Alabi, who is the Deputy Director of Public Prosecution, told the court that the mother of the baby had left her child with one Damilola, while she travelled to Ikere-Ekiti.
On her return, the boy’s mother learnt that one Efe had taken away Praise on the pretext of buying him biscuits in the neighbourhood. The prosecution also revealed that evidence proved that Efe was Mercy Ogie’s lover and not her son as believed in some quarters.
Alabi testified that when Efe was contacted on the telephone, he admitted that it was Ogie that sent him to steal the child and that the boy (Praise) had been sold off, an allegation the accused neither denied nor confirmed.
In her defence, Ogie explained that Efe was her live-in lover. The defense counsel, Chris Omokhafe, denied that Ogie conspired with Efe to steal or murder Praise.
Omokhafe contended that none of the prosecution witnesses established evidence that the missing child, Praise, was dead but that the child was taken away by Efe.
The presiding judge held that the accused defences were characterised by “tissue of lies, inconsistencies and self-contradictions”. Justice Daramola, who found Ogie guilty of the charge, consequently sentenced her to death by hanging.