Ataga’s hands, legs were tied, witness tells Court
A Co-founder of Super Network Limited, Mr. Raman Obiorah Saliu yesterday, informed a Lagos High Court sitting at the TBS that the late Super TV Chief Executive Officer, Usifo Ataga had seven multiple stabs on his neck.
Saliu spoke as a prosecution witness, in an ongoing trial of Chidinma Ojukwu, the alleged murderer of Ataga before Justice Yetunde Adesanya.
Ojukwu, a 300-level, Mass Communication student of the University of Lagos, is facing trial alongside her sister, Chioma Egbuchu and one Adedapo Quadri, for Ataga’s murder.
In his Evidence-in-Chief led by the state Deputy Director of Public Prosecution (DDPP), Mrs A. O. Oluwafemi, the witness, a network engineer, told the court that he met the late Ataga, 10 years ago, in the course of building the Super TV App.
He said that the deceased was tied up on both hands and legs like a ram waiting to be slaughtered and there was stab wound on his stomach.
Saliu, who was emotional, shedding tears as he was testifying, said there were seven multiple stabs on Ataga’s neck.
“Apart from the seven multiple stabs on Ataga’s neck, there was a stab wound on his stomach, there were stabs wounds on the two sides of Ataga’s ribs at the left ventricle.
“ I saw a very big cut at the back of his two sides of his neck, from his back to his neck as if they were going to perform surgery, when I visited the mortuary,” he testified.
The witness continued that he was introduced to Ataga, by a friend named, Mr Bisi Osuneye, who is also late.
The witness explained that Ataga, being the Chief Executive Officer of Super TV, they usually have management meetings on Mondays and Executive (EXCO), meetings on Tuesdays and they meet virtually by Microsoft link.
According to him, he got a call from him on June 14, 2021, that he was having a stomach pain, and he (witness) then told him to go and take his drugs, being a high blood pressure person who knows about drugs.
Saliu said he needed to provide Ataga, with a task that needed to be completed before the management meeting, so didn’t bother to call him back as he needed to complete the task.
“On Tuesday I wanted him (the deceased) to come to the meeting so I can give him the completed task. So, I started calling, my first call was at 11:a.m., on June 15, 2021, I wanted to give him the brief and let him know that the task was easy to relief him of the blood pressure. I started calling him, he didn’t pick his call neither did he return my message. I was surprised because the only thing he wants to hear is the billing App, with MTN, that it is working now.
“I called Gambo, who is a driver and personal assistant (PA), to Usifo I asked him, did you receive any call from Usifo. He said no, that he has also been calling him too because he needed to pick up his clothes from the laundry. Gambo said he got a WhatsApp message, which was between 5 to 6pm, on June 15, 202. Then we started thinking of what could have happened to him. His friend Okwuedo, who lives with us at Victoria Garden City (VGC), asked where is Usifo. I told him I got a WhatsApp message from Usifo so Okwuedo said let him see the message. Immediately he saw it, he said this is not Usifo’s typing.