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The people of Ezeakam Eziudo community in Ezinihitte Mbaise Local Government Area, Imo State, still shudder at the recollection of the heinous act of their kinsman, 39-year-old Chamberlin Ojoko, who allegedly gave his pregnant girlfriend, Chinonye Ella, 25, a local abortion concoction.
The concoction caused fatal adverse reaction that resulted in her death, on July 20, 2015. Like someone acting out a well-scripted plan, Ojoko was alleged to have calmly gone home to borrow a shovel from his brother, Pastor Sopuruchi and buried the corpse of the deceased girlfriend in a shallow grave, which he dug at the back of an uncompleted building owned by one Dr Maduakolam Ukaegbu, a kinsman.
According to the Imo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Taiwo Lakanu, the chain of events that ultimately led to the untimely death of Chinonye began the day she boarded the same bus with Ojoko in December 2014, at Achingali, in Obowo Local Government Area, Imo State.
They chatted along the way as the trip progressed and then exchanged phone numbers. While Chinonye lived in Umuahia, Ojoko on his part resided in Port Harcourt. Over the intervening period, Ojoko regularly invited her to Owerri, where they would lodge in a hotel and have fun. After each visit, he would give her N3,000 to N4,000 to cover her transportation costs. This continued until Chinonye informed him that she had become pregnant.
Apparently, the news that she had conceived was not well received by Ojoko, who set about sourcing for a local concoction, probably after convincing her on the need to abort the innocent unborn child.
Lakanu explained further that on July 20, 2015, the suspect took Chinonye to an uncompleted building at Ezeakam Eziudo, his community, where he gave her the local abortion concoction. Within hours, her condition became critical as intense pain wracked her body, particularly around the stomach.
At the headquarters of the Imo State Police Command, where he is being held in custody while investigations continue, Ojoko recounted to Sunday Sun, what happened that fateful night he gave his girlfriend the abortion concoction.
He said: “On July 20, 2015, I took my girlfriend to an uncompleted building around 6:30pm. My girlfriend took the herbal medicine, but later she started writhing in pain. Then she died. I ran to my house and took a shovel; I carried her body to the side of the building. I dug the ground and buried her in a shallow grave.”
Believing in his heart that he had covered his deed like Cain, who killed his brother Abel, Ojoko returned to Port Harcourt, to the warm embrace of his unsuspecting and pregnant wife. But unknown to him, a certain little girl had seen him carry out the dead body of Chinonye, and dump it in the grave he dug. The little girl later told the owner of the building about the horrific crime she saw. After the shock of the revelation wore off, Dr. Ukaegbu ran to the Ezinihitte police station to report what he was told by the girl. The police station contacted the Head of the Homicide Unit at the Imo State headquarters in Owerri, Supol Innocent Obi, who led his men, Pastor Sopuruchi Ojoko (brother of the suspect) and Dr. Ukaegbu, to Port Harcourt, where Chamberlain Ojoko was arrested.
Giving further insight to the incident, brother of the suspect, Pastor Sopuruchi Ojoko, told Sunday Sun: “I saw my brother Chamberlin Ojoko and his girlfriend on that day around 3.00pm. They didn’t enter our house in the compound; instead they walked toward Eziudo road. About 9:00pm, I saw that my elder brother, Chamberlin, returned to the house without the girl.
“He requested for shovel and took it to the bush. He didn’t return till 11:00pm. I asked him where he was coming from at that late hour; he said he went to the toilet. I asked him, why he came to the village without informing us. He replied that he was working at the building site. I saw bruises and wounds on his hand. When information got to us that my elder brother murdered his girlfriend, I had to take the policemen to Port-Harcourt to arrest him.”
On August 15, 2015, the body of the deceased girlfriend was exhumed and autopsy conducted. The policemen discovered how he used the deceased girlfriend’s cloth to choke her. There were stains of the victim’s blood at the uncompleted building. The police also learnt that the suspect threw away the handset of the deceased girlfriend.
As it stands now, Lakanu said the Command is concerned to locate the relations of the deceased given that her handset which could have offered assistance in this regard was thrown away by the suspect.
“We want members of the public to assist us and provide information that would help us find the relations of the deceased. We learnt from the suspect that the deceased resided in Umuahia, Abia State, before her demise,” Lakanu pleaded.
Also, the suspect will soon be charged to court after completion of the investigation.