A General Court Martial of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) on Tuesday sentenced Air Craftman Benard Kalu to death by hanging for the killing of his colleague-girlfriend, Corporal Oladipupo S. A.
Kalu shot and killed Oladipupo at her Corporal and Below Quarters, Compound 9, Air Force Base, Makurdi on the allegation that she was having an affair with another man.
Kalu, 21, after breaking into Oladipupo’s home in the early hours of the fateful Sunday, shot her on the neck at close range, and also attempted to kill the man he met in the apartment.
But his rifle got hooked, a situation that allowed the man to struggle with Kalu until he was able to disarm him.
The Judge Advocate, Flight Lieutenant MA Umoh, listed the eight-count charge against Kalu to include murder, house breaking, attempted murder, failure to perform military duty, loss of service property, disobedience of service order as well as prejudice of service discipline.
Umoh noted that the accused pleaded not guilty to all the eight-count charge, adding that the prosecution brought 13 witnesses, while three witnesses including the accused were called by the defence counsel.
He maintained further that even though the prosecution found him guilty on all the eight-count charge, the defence, in closing their case, said the prosecution did not prove the case beyond reasonable doubt.
The defence counsel, Abimiku Ewuga, urged the court to temper justice with mercy in their sentence especially as the accused was a first time offender and the bread winner of his family.
Delivering judgment, President of the court, Gp. Capt. Elisha Bindul, who found the accused guilty on six out of the eight-count charge preferred against him, sentenced him to death by hanging subject to the confirmation of the conveying authority.
Ewuga told newsmen that the ruling would be taken to the Court of Appeal.
Prosecution counsel, Oluremi Ilori, in his reaction hailed the judgment.
-[DAILY POST – Nigeria]