THIS LIFE: Blind Herbalist Defrauds 86-Year-Old Woman Of N19m, Sleeps With Her Daughter, Granddaughter
An 86-year-old woman is currently battling to retrieve N19 million from a blind herbalist who allegedly defrauded her under the pretext of healing her child and making money rituals for her.
The desperate attempt of an aged woman to prevent death from snatching her children has landed her in trouble.
The 86-year-old woman identified simply as Madam Alimot had 15 children, but they were snatched by death one after the other until she was left with only three.
When one of the remaining children was also hit by a strange illness last year, the octogenarian woman began a frantic search for healing. In the process, she stumbled on a weekly programme on a popular radio station based in Ogun State, where a blind herbalist was advertised as a man with mystical powers to heal the sick and see visions about people’s life problems.
Consequently, Madam Alimot, who lives in Mowe area of Ogun State, visited the herbalist, Owolabi Adefemi a.k.a. Ojunu after taking down the his phone number and address, at his home in Ogijo, another community in Ogun State, for a solution to the sickness that had seized her daughter.
Unknown to her, she had walked into the dragnet of a fraudster. Adefemi was said to have told the woman that death was hovering around her household and could only be averted through an atonement requiring a sacrifice with a cow.
The desperate woman promptly provided the amount requested for the sacrifice, setting off a chain of subsequent requests for additional money for unexpected sacrifices that gulped a princely N19 million.
By the time the scales fell off from the eyes of the woman and her children, she had sold her two buildings while her daughter and granddaughter had warmed the herbalist’s bed several times.
The homeless aged woman and her children are now left to cry for justice and a refund of the money the herbalist allegedly defrauded them of.
She said she had noticed that rather than giving her a concoction for the treatment of her daughter’s illness, the herbalist kept saying he could make her rich after making some sacrifice with cows and other expensive items.
Alimot said: “He said we were taking the big cow to Agbara and later changed it to Mowo area of Badagry.
“We were asked to enter the house with our back to the door, and we saw a well-built young man on the floor. He said the cow we gave him money to buy had turned into a man.
“He asked me to pray on the young man’s body and stab him to death but I declined. They took our photographs and I challenged him to take our photograph at the scene while I held the knife in my hand.
“We were shown plenty of cash of different denominations stuffed in a sack.
“Babalawo Ojunu (Owolabi Adefemi) and one old man called Agbaakin, who we met in the building, then said that we could not take the money because we did not come with the third person. We left the place without the money.
“When we went back to him, he also did not give us the money. Instead, he said the money would just appear in my house with at night.
”Later, he said a monarch in Ile-Ife, Osun State had summoned him over my matter and that a sum of N2 million was needed to pacify the monarch.
“We ended up paying him the sum of N5 million on that day, but he never gave me any charm for my sick child and the child has not died contrary to what he said to cajole me to sell my houses and give him the proceeds of the sale.
“I sold the house I had built with N9 million for N5 million and gave him the money. I also sold another house and gave him the money, totalling about N19 million.
“I want to collect my money from Owolabi Adefemi a.k.a. Ojunu and Nigerians should help me because I don’t have anywhere to call home anymore.
“I have also developed high blood pressure, among other complications, as a result of this predicament of mine.
“My drugs cost N15,000 and I don’t even have money to buy the drugs as I speak.”
One of Madam Alimot’s children, Bose, said: “I want to plead with Nigerians to help me beg Owolabi Adefemi a.k.a. Ojunu, a herbalist, to leave us alone, because my mother is dying right now.
“He has been collecting huge sums of money from my mother and my mother is panicking now.
“He cajoled my mother to sell two houses and collected the proceeds from the sale of the buildings, yet he has not let go of her.
“My mother was contemplating suicide and we have been begging her not to kill herself.
“I did not know him before until my mother gave the phone to him and he told me that I should follow her to Badagry for a certain propitiation.
“When we got to Mowo area of Badagry, he told us that we would need to buy a cow that cost N280,000 and an additional N38,000 for transporting the cow to the place where the atonement against death would be made.
“He said that failure to do that would result in multiple deaths in our family.
“That day, he took me into a dingy house and asked me to enter the house with my back to the door.
“On entering the place, I saw an old man there who asked me to pray in front of a deity, but I refused.
“He collected the N38,000 meant for transporting the cow from me and we left.
“When we returned to the place again, the old man I saw in the house led us to the back of the building where we saw a well-built man lying helplessly on the floor.
“I asked why the cow was not brought there but he said it was the cow that had turned into the helpless man on the floor and that it was begging not to be slaughtered for the sacrifice meant to avert my mother’s death.
“I was just laughing at his response, and I started shouting blood of Jesus Christ.
“He then gave me a knife to kill the man, saying that a picture of the scene would be taken twice.
“When I refused to take the knife from him, he shouted at my mother who was then visibly shaken when she was asked to hold the knife and pose with the ‘cow’ for a photograph, and she was photographed twice.
“He collected the sum of N3.8 million. I gathered the money from various sources including someone in my neighbourhood and cooperative society. Yet he kept disturbing me, saying that I have to come to pay him another N1.5 million as the balance of the total sum before they would unveil something I don’t understand.
“I warned my mother to stop giving the man money because I sensed that he was a fraudster. But my mother disagreed with me, saying that the man only wanted to help her out of her child’s ill-health.
“The matter has scattered our family as other relatives assumed that I was the one that collected the money realised from the sale of one of her buildings. They did not know that my own money was also included in the amount collected by the herbalist.
“I remember that I personally transferred the money paid for the purchase of one of her houses to her, which she in turn paid to the herbalist.
“She later sold the house she was living for N5 million and gave it to the herbalist.
“My mother has nowhere to live now. He cannot stay with me because my apartment is too small to accommodate both of us.
“Besides, I am a widow struggling to make ends meet because I don’t live on a salary.”
Bose explained further that Adefemi cajoled her mother and also lured her to bed after he had scammed them of millions of naira.
“He actually asked my mother to sell her house. He claimed that there was something in the house that was buried underneath the foundation, and that a cow costing N350,000 would be needed to remove the evil substance from the house.
“He said that he would personally come to my mother’s house to remove the evil item buried in the house by unknown persons. He however changed his mind and asked my mother and my aunt to come over to Badagry where the sacrifice would be carried out.
“He said the item was buried inside a big pot under the building and that he could invoke the item to come out of the ground where it was buried.
“He once asked me to come on a particular day and he took me into his office where a strange creature was humming. He paid for my transportation when I told him I had no money to transport myself to and from his house.
“He later said that we would go to Badagry together and I told him that I had no money to transport myself there.
“He said that three strange birds costing N750,000 each would be needed to offer additional sacrifices.
“He told my mother to sell a three-bedroom bungalow in the Mowe area of Ogun State. The building is located on a one-and-a-half plot of land.
“I did not know anything about it and did not collect from the proceeds. The entire money was given to the herbalist.
“I lived in Ikorodu for 13 years and I did not know this herbalist called Ojunu. My mother said that he had been hearing about the herbalist lately on the radio and how he had been handling several spiritual afflictions despite the fact that he was blind.
“At a point, he told me that if there would be a permanent solution to my mother’s sickness, he would have to have an affair with me.
“I initially turned down the proposal, but he said that there was not nothing he could do if I was not ready to date him. I later acceded to his request and he made love to me in the hotel and in his house.
“He also said that he saw a vision and cajoled me to bring my daughter who is in her 20s to come for spiritual cleansing, and he slept with her too.
“He collected a total N19 million from my mother between December 2022 and April 2023.
“I asked my mother to tell me the purpose for selling her properties and giving the money to Baba Ojunu but she wouldn’t talk.
“Baba Ojunu later warned us against telling anyone about what transpired between my mother and him as well as my love affair with him, threatening that we would lose our lives if we did not heed his warning.
“In fact, he made me take several oaths with him and warned me of dire consequences if I told anyone about what transpired between us.
“My mother has no house to live in now and my aunt is also now indebted to his employers and others.
“Baba Ojunu had no car before we started giving him money, but along the line, he bought two cars: a Toyota Forerunner Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) and a sports car with Ojunu 1 on the number plates.
“We later learnt that one of his sons took the car away and plunged it into a river.
“He bought plots of land from various persons from the money he collected from us.
“His first wife, Mama Niyi, was the one that told us that he defrauded us when he used police to arrest her son who stole his car.
“We went to his house that day to plead with him to refund the money he collected from my mother when his first wife, Mama Niyi, confronted him for arresting his son, saying ‘You arrested my son for taking a car you bought from the money you scammed Bose (me) and her mother…. you (Ojunu) are a thief.’”
Explaining his complicity in the matter, the embattled herbalist described Bose as his accomplice in the matter.
Adefemi said: “Mama came to me in September 2022 for a cure to diabetes. We all know that diabetes has no permanent cure.
“She explained to me that she had spent all her money on seeking treatment for the illness and that she wanted to do money rituals.
“I told her that I could not do money rituals for her and that I could only invoke a spirit to fetch her money from a public vault. I told her that she risks jail term if she is found to be the brains behind the spirit that would fetch the money for her.’’
Adefemi said that Bose actually connived with him to defraud her mother, alleging that she was paid 10 per cent on every payment made by her aged mother.
He said: “Mama Alimot paid for the production of a cabinet to save the money. She paid me N350,000 that day and I gave her daughter Bose part of the money before taking her to a hotel where I made love to her same day.
“Bose was the one that was giving me information whenever Mama had money, and I would work on the old woman to collect more money from her.
“For example, she told me that her mother had just collected her share of the sale of a landed property running into millions of naira. He asked me to work on her mother to collect part of the money and I did.
“Her mother even gave her N800,000 from the money to give to me. I gave Bose her own share of the money.
“Whenever Bose was broke, she would call me and ask me for money and I usually gave her.
“My wife did not know that I slept with Bose. I gave Bose part of the money in bits like N5000 or N8,000.
“She (Bose) recently told me that her mother was sick and I asked her mother to provide a big cow that would be sacrificed to avert her death.
“She gave me money for the cow and bought a new knife as directed. I told Mama that the cow had turned into a young man and that he had to kill the young man if indeed she wanted to be free from sickness.
“Mama did not kill anybody. I was the one that set her up just to create fear in her by photographing the scene where I asked them to kill the young man I lied was the cow. I actually collected N350,000 three times for the cows.
“I only defrauded Mama of over N5 million for seven months (September 2022 to March 2023) and not N19 million. The house Mama sold was where she lived in the Mowe area of Ogun State.
“From the money I collected from Bose’s mother, I was also sharing to my first wife, Mama Niyi, until I arrested my son, Niyi, who stole my Toyota Camry car, television set and generator, hence, Niyi’s mother publicly exposed me for using police to arrest her son.’’
“I used to deceive them that a spirit was talking with Mama about her predicament. What Mama did not know is that I was the one faking the voice of an old woman to deceive her. However, Bose and I spent the money together and I am telling the truth.
“I am treating high concentration of sugar in my body and I spend over N10,000 on treatment on a weekly basis.
“If I had money-making charms, I would have done it for myself and become rich before doing it for others.
“I can only promise to refund Mama’s N800,000 and they would have to give me time to raise the money because I am broke at the moment.’’