A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has sentenced Maryam Sanda to death by hanging, three years after she killed her husband, Bilyamin Bello.
Bilyamin was son of former Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Haliru Bello.
Justice Yusuf Halilu in his judgement convicted Sanda based on the `doctrine of last seen’, saying that the doctrine places a burden of proof on the accused who was the last person to be seen with the deceased.
Haliru in his ruling said from the evidence before him, it was irrefutably definite that the accused fatally stabbed the deceased adding that the two extrajudicial statements made by the convict were undisputed.
“I am convinced that the defendant stabbed the deceased and therefore guilty of charges against her.
“She is hereby convicted of the murder of her husband as charged,’’ he held.
The judge in his judgement said justice to the society outweighs the justice to the defendant and it will serve as a deterrent to others.
“She should reap what she has sown, blood for blood.
“For it has been said that thou shall not kill and whoever kills in cold blood deserves death as his or her own reward or punishment.
“The mindless and senseless killing of men and women in our society must be seriously frowned upon.
“Accordingly, I hereby sentence Maryam Sanda to death by hanging.
“Sanda should be remanded in Suleja Correctional Centre until the convict exhausts her right of appeal in the court of appeal,’’ Halilu said.
The police had arraigned Sanda for stabbing her husband with a broken bottle at about 3:50 a.m. on Nov. 18, 2017.
Sanda in her confession had said her deceased husband fell on a shisha pot and died as a result, a statement the judge said is a smokescreen.
The police also accused Maimuna Aliyu, Sanda’s mother; Aliyu, her brother, and Sadiya Aminu, her housemaid, of meddling with evidence by wiping the blood clean and destroying other proofs from the crime scene, but the charges were later dropped.
Justice Halilu discharged her co-defendants after they filed a no case-submission and ordered her to enter her defence.
There were loud wailings and pitiful scenes in the court after the judge delivered his judgement with Maryam’s mother, relatives and other family members all crying as officials of the Nigeria Correctional Service (NCS) dragged her away.