The media has been awash with the news of four Nigerian university students who were murdered at the hands of a mob last week because they were alleged to be armed robbers. There are different variations of the story – some account say they went to accost another student who owed them some money whilst others say they extorted property from the said student who then began to shout “Thieves” after they left. The end result was that these boys were stripped naked, beaten and and then burned alive in the name of ‘punishing’ criminals. To top it all, there were a lot of people watching all this go down and one of them had the gall to make a video and upload it. I certainly didn’t know any of the boys but I have not been able to focus on anything else since. I am filled with a deep sense of sadness that young people could meet such a gruesome death in 2012 and a sense of fear/horror that there are human beings who could do this to another person. No one deserves to die like this, certainly not for the mobile phone and laptop they were alleged to have taken. But what really kills my spirit is that there were other people watching and they did nothing to help these boys.
May their souls find rest.
I’ve thought hard about whether or not to post a link to the video but I decided to do so because I didn’t appreciate the gravity of this crime until I saw it. I couldn’t sleep last night and I don’t know if tonight will be any better.
Edit: The Nigerian Police have so far arrested at least 13 people associated with the crime. Read more here