Human sacrifice was an ancient custom recorded to have been in existence for more than 5000 years. It was part and parcel of some religions and cultures. According to history, human sacrifice was carried out to appease the gods of the land and sometimes slaves were buried alive with their dead masters to escort them to the after-world.
Julius Caesar in some of his works wrote extensively on the practice of cannibalism and human sacrifice by the Celts and Druids who were believed to have lived in Ireland and Britain over thousands years ago. Victoria Holt also gave account of the ‘activities’ of the Celts and Druids in her book; seven for a secret. Though there is a sectional belief that the claim that the Celts and Druids practiced cannibalism and ritual killings is untrue.
Recent reports on human sacrifice are still found across Africa in countries like Liberia, Namibia, Nigeria, Tanzania etc. From the history of the Ijebus of Yoruba land, human sacrifice was believe to be done on a yearly basis which includes festival like the ‘Oro festival’ where women are banned from witnessing the festival and any woman caught is believed to be sacrificed. The human sacrifice is said to be carried out for good fortunes, to get rid of evil spirits and prevent widespread of diseases in their communities.
Apart from the stories we have heard about ritual killings, the first real case that got my attention in Nigeria on cannibalism and human part dealers was the case of Clifford Orji who was arrested around Apapa-Oshodi road early 1999 after passers-by noticed suspicious activities under the bridge. He later died in prison on August 2012.
There have been subsequent reported cases of ritual killings after Clifford Orji was caught; in 2004 Okija shrine was uncovered with over 50 decaying bodies and 20 human skulls discovered; two Nasarawa State men were caught with the head of little Samu Danjuma which they cut off because of a business deal of N250,000 (Dailytimes, 26th July 2012); the police in Matari area of Bauchi state arrested Tukur Adamu for allegedly plucking out the eyes of a seven-year-old boy on 17 October 2012
To mention but a few of the ritualists’ den uncovered since the beginning of this year that made it to the media; house of horror at Soka-Ibadan, Oyo State where hundreds of people were believed to have been killed; an underground cell suspected being used for human ritual activities at Iyana Egbado, Ewekoro Local Government Area of Ogun State; a ritualist’ den owned by pastor Ernest Nwankwo of Holy Family Ministry was uncovered in Ogolonto, Lagos with 8 kidnapped victims rescued etc.
Following some of the ritual killings’ stories in Nollywood movies, most ritual killings are done for ‘supernatural encounter’ and ‘ritual money’ but its increase in this era is surprisingly especially when you think people should know better… the drive for success in our society is no longer achievements associated with service but rather to gratify worldly desires such as accumulating wealth at the expense of well being of the society. Money itself is not bad and not the root of all evil but rather the ‘love’ of money is the root of all evil.
One of the easiest ways in gratifying some of the worldly desires and finding a lasting peace is to recognize that majority of the problems (failures) in our society are not spiritual attacks. Not every failure is a curse… Most breakthroughs in the world came about by series of failures which led to success at the end.
If the desire of most people is to make more money, the solution has never been with the voodoo masters because if they actually have the solution; it will be a secret most of them will keep to themselves. The solution to accumulate wealth and prosper in the society is to recognize opportunities that lie within every problems and use it to our gain.
In summary, the recipes for wealth using the words of Booker T. Washington from his book, ‘up from slavery’, “is to keep in mind that we shall prosper in proportion as we learn to dignify and glorify common labour and put brains and skill into the common occupations of life; we shall prosper in proportion as we learn to draw the line between the superficial and the substantial,the ornamental gewgaws of life and the useful. No race can prosper till it learns that there is dignity in labour either in tilling a field or in writing a poem”.