by Clement A. Oloyede
The first prosecution witness in the trial of Maryam Sanda over the alleged murder of her husband, Bilyamin Bello narrated the incident yesterday.
Ibrahim Mohammed, a businessman and a friend of the deceased told a High Court in Jabi Maryam Sanda, who the police charged with the murder, attempted to stab the deceased multiple times on the night of November 18, 2017.
While being led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, James Idachaba, the witness told the court that Maryam threatened to cut off the manhood of the deceased unless she was divorced that night.
He said while he was smoking ‘Shisha’ and watching TV with the deceased, Maryam came down to call the deceased and while they were upstairs he heard noise from upstairs before Maryam sent Sadiya (the fourth defendant) to call him. “When I got there, I saw both Maryam and Bilyaminu holding each other’s cloth on the neck. I asked what was happening and pleaded that they stop this.
“Maryam told me to tell Bilyaminu to divorce her. I told her they should exercise patience and stop fighting. She said she was not going anywhere until he divorced her.”
The witness said he had to disengage Maryam’s hands from the deceased’s neck, adding that when he did this, Maryam picked a bottle by the side of the door and broke it on the wall.
“She came straight to Bilyaminu to stab him. I held her hands and Bilyaminu went behind her and collected the broken bottle from her hands and went downstairs. I closed the door and continued to advise Maryam that they should stop fighting. She said she would not stop until Bilyaminu divorced her that night; that either he divorced her or she would cut his private part.
“While pleading with her, Bilyamin entered the bedroom and Maryam followed him, insisting that he should divorce her that night but Bilyamin kept silent.”
Muhammed said Maryam thereafter took one of the containers of scent and broke it on the table and approached Bilyamin to stab him but the deceased held her hand and collected the container and they started hitting each other, before Bilyamin pushed her to the bed and went downstairs but Maryam followed him downstairs.
He said at the sitting room downstairs, Maryam entered the kitchen and took a knife, which he said he collected from her hand, adding that she later took up a table knife, which he also collected from her hands. “She attempted picking the knife for about three or four times,” he added.
He said after leaving the house around 1a.m of November 19, 2017 “Abbah Bello (a brother to the deceased) called me about 1 hour later that I should come to Maitama Hospital because Bilyaminu was dead. I went there and met Bilyaminu lying on a bed in front of the hospital. There was a hole in his chest near the heart, bite on his stomach. There was a cut on his thigh and there was a sign of stitching on him,” he said.
He said both families of the couple were at the hospital, adding that they left from there to the police station after the corpse was taken to the mortuary. He added that while going to the station, Maryam’s mother and brother (Maimuna Aliyu and Aliyu Sanda) with a policeman in their car diverted to the couple’s house.
He added that Usman Aliyu told him that they should followed them to the house to see what was happening there, adding that Maimuna and Aliyu went upstairs, while the policeman was in front of the car.
“Usman Aliyu and I entered the sitting room and observed that everything was normal as we left it. When we looked at where Bilyaminu prayed, there was a pair of slippers and praying mat. On a closer look, we discovered that the window blind had come down.”
Under cross-examination by counsels for the defendants: Joseph Daudu (SAN); Rotimi Ogunesan (SAN); A .T. Kehinde (SAN) and Olusegun Jolaawo, the witness told the court that he left the deceased performing ablution when he was leaving his house that night.
He declared that he did not have any knowledge of medicine and did not know the cause of Bilyaminu’s death, saying that the deceased did not sustain any injuries when he collected the broken bottle from his wife.
Asked if Maryam threatened to kill the deceased all through the fights, the witness said she did not state so, adding, however, that, “Maryam said she would cut his private part.”
The trial judge, Justice Yusuf Halilu, upon the conclusion of the evidence of the witness and based on consensus of parties adjourned the case to May 15 and 16 for continuation of hearing
Culled from Daily Trust