On the day an Abuja High Court sentenced Maryam Sanda to death for the 2017 premeditated murder of her husband, Bilyaminu Bello, the Katsina state police command have arrested a 19-year-old housewife, Rabi Shamsudeen, for allegedly stabbing her husband to death at Danjaku village in the Malumfashi Local Government Area of Katsina State on Monday morning.
The Federal Capital Territory High Court had found Maryam Sanda guilty of killing her husband, Bilyaminu Bello and was sentenced to death by hanging by the judge.
The Nigerian police charged Ms Sanda for culpable homicide in November 2017 and sought the death penalty against the accused in a two-count charge.
The victim, Mr Bello, was the son of a former national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Haliru Bello.
The spokesman for the Katsina police command, SP Gambo Isah, said Rabi allegedly stabbed her 25-year-old husband, Shamsudeen Salisu, to death about 4 a.m on Monday.
The police spokesman said a preliminary investigation had not shown the reasons for Rabi’s action.
Gambo added, “When the neighbours climbed the fence of the house and entered the building, Shamsudeen was seen crawling out, holding on to his stomach while Rabi was seen holding a blood-stained knife in her hand.
“The neighbours rushed Shamsudeen to the General Hospital, Malumfashi but died before reaching the hospital. Rabi is in our custody while investigation on the incident has already begun.”
For Ms Sanda, it was a judicial drama that lasted almost three almost years but reached a milestone Monday when Justice Yusuf Halilu of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court found Maryam Sanda guilty of killing her husband, Bilyaminu Bello.
Ms Sanda allegedly stabbed her husband with a kitchen knife with a clear intent to kill, Mr Halilu said in the judgment on a two-count homicide charge brought by the Nigerian police against Ms Sanda in November 2017.
The prosecution asked for the death penalty. The judge obliged by sentencing the convict to death by hanging.
He said although the prosecution did not prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt, as there was no other witness of the incident aside from the accused and no autopsy or murder weapon tendered, the surrounding circumstances were compelling.
Justice Halilu said he reached his verdict by relying on the compelling circumstantial evidence and testimonies of the six witnesses called by the police, the relatives of the convict who cleaned up the scene of the murder; a post-mortem examination on the deceased’s corpse; and the contradictory statements of the convict.
The judge said he also relied on the “Doctrine of the Last Scene”, which stipulates that the last person at a crime scene bears full responsibility.
“It serves to buttress the finding that the defendant was the last to be seen with the deceased and therefore has full responsibility of what caused his death”, Mr Halilu who was appointed a judge at the FCT High Court in 2010 noted.
After the judge found her guilty and was about to deliver sentence, Ms Sanda forced her way out of the dock and burst into tears, screaming “Who will take care of my daughter?”
She was headed for the balcony before she was restrained by security officials.