By Chinyere Omeire
Over four years after the murder of postgraduate student, Cynthia Osokogu, in a hotel in FESTAC Town, a Lagos High Court will on March 23 give judgment in the trial of four accused over the incident.
Justice Olabisi Akinlade of a Lagos High Court, Igbosere, had on Jan. 12, during the adoption of the final written addresses by all the counsel in the case, fixed the date to deliver judgment.
Osokogu was allegedly lured to Lagos by her Facebook lover and murdered on July 22, 2012, at Cosmilla Hotel, Lakeview Estate, Festac Town.
The four accused charged with the murder of the postgraduate student are: Okwumo Nwabufo, 33; Olisaeloka Ezike, 23; Orji Osita, 33, and Ezike Nonso, 25.
They were arraigned on a six-count charge of conspiracy, murder, stealing, recklessness, negligence and possession of stolen goods, to which they all pleaded not guilty.
During the proceedings, 10 witnesses gave evidence.
The court initially foreclosed the right of the second accused, Olisaeloka Ezike, to file his address.
The judge made the order due to the delay by his counsel to file his final written address.
According to the judge, there were several adjournments by the court to enable the second accused file his address but the counsel chose to sleep on the right of his client.
However, after the excuse of ill-health and change of counsel were given as reasons for the delay, the judge allowed the address to be regularised.
The murder trial began on Feb. 8, 2013, with the state calling the hotel’s receptionist as its first witness.
The body of late Cynthia, 24, the only daughter of then Brig.- Gen. Frank Osokogu, now retired, was discovered in a Lagos morgue a month after she was declared missing by her family.
She was a post-graduate student at the Nasarawa State University and an entrepreneur, who owned a boutique at her base before her death.