Pandemonium broke out in Aba, the commercial hub of Abia State at the weekend when a man set his wife ablaze for complaining to her sister-in-law on phone about the husband’s alleged maltreatment .
The suspect later reported himself to the police. The man, whose name was given as Ndubuisi Okafor, a trailer driver, who hails from Amawbia, Awka in Anambra State, had allegedly been having quarrels with the wife for sometime now.
Okafor, who owns two trailers, was reported to have severally accused her wife of being too religious which he claimed, prevented him from making good money. He was alleged to have even destroyed the wife’s Bible. A source revealed that two days to the incident, the woman, Chinyere, 40, who hailed from Obingwu Asa in Ukwa West Local Government of Abia State, had complained to the husband that she was sick and needed initially money to buy some drugs, which the husband refused.
This prompted Chinyere to call her sister-in-law on phone to complain about it and other related issues which did not go down well with the man. Okafor, according to the source, later gave the wife money for the drugs and travelled to Port Harcourt. When Okafor came back from his journey the following day he met his wife cooking and went inside the kitchen to confront her over the phone call to his sister. The man did not accept his wife’s explanations. He allegedly pounced on his wife, who had three boys for him and attacked her.
After beating the wife to stupor, Okafor allegedly forced her to drink some litres of fuel, poured some on her body before dumping his wife, into a big rubber container before setting her ablaze. Neighbours who were attracted to the apartment by the woman’s cry for help broke into their flat, put out the fire before rushing the lady to hospital. The first hospital she was taken to rejected her due to the high degree of burns she sustained.
But it was at the Living Word Mission Hospital where she was admitted and given first aid treatment and referred to UNTH, Enugu. It was on their way to UNTH at Osisioma, about two kilometres from the hospital, the woman died. Four hospitals allegedly rejected the body being deposited at their mortuary because it was badly damaged. When Okafor learnt the wife had died, he reported himself to the Timber Police Station where he reportedly told the police it was his wife that set herself ablaze. Relations of the deceased are alleging that the man killed their sister for rituals.
According to the woman’s elder sister, Nkechinyere Nwogu, “before the incident, Okafor had severally told my sister he needed money at all costs and that the wife had been the stumbling block, and he even destroyed her Bible. “Presently, we the family members don’t know where the body of my sister is because four hospitals rejected her body to be deposited in their mortuary due to its very bad state.”
When our correspondent visited 45 Azubuike Street by Uratta /Express junction residence of the couple, the building was deserted by their neighbours over fear of massive arrest by the police. As at Press time, the suspect was still being detained at the Timber Police Station.