“Let us mourn in peace” – A tribute to Cynthia Osokogu

by Aisha Ene Ella

In the last few days I have seen had my heart torn, stripped and broken in pieces first by the disappearance and death of my dearest friend and secondly by the wickedness exhibited by Nigerians, passing judgement on someone they never knew or met.

When Cynthia was officially declared missing we put up a number online so people with information can call and help out, of over 500 calls we received in 3 days, only 2 of those calls were from people who actually helped with  any information. One was from my dear friend Nuhu Kwajafa. The other was from the Area Commander who called to inform us of the arrest of the  people.

The others were heartbreaking to say the least, I wondered how her mother would have coped if she had to deal with silliness, pettiness and undeserved hate from strangers, who just took one look at a lady and decided to judge her based on her looks.

When The sad news of her death broke, I made a comment and said I hope ” all those who have insisted she was with a man would have their answer now and let her rest in peace” how wrong I was, They did not rest, they only manufactured a more hurtful and painful story, formulate more rumors and pass it around as facts. How despicable….hmmm it is well.

I have no comments for hateful people, I just want to share with you my experience of the real Cynthia…the Cynthia we knew not the one who hateful people have created in the last few days.

Cynthia was born on 10th of November 1987 to Gen Frank and Joy- Rita Nkem Osokogu. Udoka as her Mother named her, even as a baby was a uniting factor in her family. Her Mother had 3 boys before her, she was the last baby and only girl.

Her Parents had settled in Jos where we were and still are neighbours. We became friends because in those days there were only very few houses in the area.

I was the last child in my family and so did not have a lot of playmates my age, her brothers were my mates and Cynthia as the only girl did not have many friends around the neighbourhood either so she tagged along when we had our “adventures” and “yawo”.

Cynthia the Model and Business Woman

2004 was one of the hardest years for the family I was raised with in Jos, Cynthia and her Mom were with me all the way. They were there to comfort, assist, cook etc. They were my family!

Cynthia was a tall beautiful and slender girl, we always teased her because even at 13 she was taller than me and the same height with her older brothers. She was a tomboy all the way…determined, stubborn and focused.

As she grew into her height her mum and I playful suggest she try modelling because of her structure, Cynthia took it seriously, even though her major focus was education she gave modelling a trial and did quite well as a model.

In 2007, she got her first major job and I will never forget the day she called me from Lagos after she had been paid, she said she wouldn’t want to waste the money and would buy clothes and take to her University in Keffi, Nassarawa State to sell.

The first batch of clothes never made it to Keffi as industrious Cynthia who staying with her brother during her visit at Airforce Quarters sold the clothes to her brother, his colleagues and their friends, she told me she made 3 times her capital and immediately re-invested, bought more stock, came to Keffi and rented a shop.

That was the birth of her Baby: “Dresscode“.

I remember I bought her the forms to one of the national competitions some years ago, she passed the screening passed 2 stages and called me one day to say she was asked to compromise to get through the next round, I told her to withdraw and she left. That was in 2011. She never entered any major pageant after that

When it came to business Cynthia was ‘Midas’. She knew how to make a great sale…she was never at a loss, her business grew from strength to strength and she was not even 21 years old yet. At 21 a lot of the people who now make it a point to formulate such hateful rumours were still struggling to buy Jamb Results.

Cynthia the Sister and Daughter:

Cynthia was like the baby sister I didn’t have, She was my confidant, stylist and a great comfort. We shared a lot, tears, smiles, laughs, joys ,sorrows and she was always at my service.

She was greatly involved in charity, anytime I sent a text or posted a picture of someone needing medical support, I could count on Cynthia as one of the first respondents.  When she was in Abuja, she would always come and volunteer, run errands, always with a smile.

When I go to Jos, she will be at the motor park waiting, Thats if she doesnt pick me up from Abuja. Not to forget her being my personal stylist. She either bought or chose most of my clothes, most times my friends say “you look nice” i tell them “ask Cynthia oh, I have no idea what I am wearing”. Style has never been a strong point of mine, but if Cynthia bought it or asked me to buy it I knew it was good and stylish

To her Mother, Cynthia was her heart. Several times i will ask Cynthia please dont go to Jos it is volatile and she will reply: ” Mumsy is alone at home”, or when she is in Jos and there was a fight I would call and ask her to leave Jos and come and stay a few days with me, she will say “I cant leave Mumsy alone here now” .

That was our Cynthia; Always putting others first.

When it was time to serve, while others would work their service to areas full of opportunity like Abuja, Lagos and Porthacort, Cynthia worked her service to crisis ridden Jos to be close to her Mother, Is that what a “runsgirl” does?

At age 24, Cynthia had a successful business, and was running a Post Graduate Program in Public Administration, sadly people will ignore all that and choose to believe that because she is pretty and Young she must be a “Runsgirl”, how sad, but we cannot judge people by our own low and shabby standards.

She earned every kobo she had by good old hard work. Lets even forget her father supported her financially…even that didn’t turn her to a spoilt brat she was as determined as ever to make her own mark and earn her own keep.

The world and people who have no standards can stand afar and judge all they want but we know who you are and we love you, we don’t need to defend you my baby, but were just setting the records straight.

The security Situation in our country now is horrible at best, people are kidnapped, robbed and killed everyday, why is it so hard to believe that a young girl was killed while going to pursue her legitimate business?

If It was a man who was killed would we have come up with all these stories? If it was an older woman or someone not so attractive would we?

Her crime is being, young, pretty and a business woman. Hmmm…..people, Have the decency to at least let us mourn in peace…PLEASE!!!


*Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

Comments (15)

  1. Nigeria is ROTTEN- The military regimes and greedy politician ruined the country. The days of Awo, zik and Saduana were better days EVEN IF THOSE DAYS WERE NOT PERFECT. Nowadays , murder, impunity, and religious fanaticism supported by Saudi Arabia and the Arabs of the Middle East is about to tear the country apart. People get killed at will, this a very lawless country- NO BODY GETS PROSECUTED.

  2. The pain I feel reading this story I can't cope! This. Could be anyone! Even the people writin the negative stories it cld be ur sister aunt or a relative of urs, so stop being prejudice n learn! I am writing in tears because this. Girl is ma age mate and she had a lot to offer! She had a gift n a passion that could bring about a change in someone's life!I don't know u Cynthia but I pray u find peace just the way u port a beautifull smile I trully belive ur heart was full of love. If u were my sista I think I will follow u to the Grave cuz u r a pearl!

  3. What a world we live in!See how ur dreams can be shattered in a twinkle of an eye! So painful

  4. What a world we live in!See how ur dreams can be shattered in a twinkle of an eye! So painful

  5. In thevUK whenever a crime is committed by a black person, they insult all black people. In Nigeria, when a crime is committed by a Nigeian, we insult the victim, wow! To the 'Christian' who posted, now I've been a Christian for many years now, but I'm struggling to see 'Christ' in your post, i.e. Where is the 'christlike' spirit of mourning with those who mourn, or your obedience to the instruction to cast the first stone only if you have not sinned – not to say this beautiful woman sinned by the way.

    Aisha, may the good Lord comfort you and her mum and family on the loss of their beautiful daughter.

    Rest in peace, beautiful one.

  6. You have no idea of the clothes selling business. The average profit made in the boutique industry is anything between 50% – 5times the cost price, especially if you sell on credit. The profit is even much higher if the goods are second hand or luxury goods.

    And as for the story that the Killers bought her a flight ticket, I find that false. That story came straight from the 419 Killers themselves and I find it difficult to believe. The Killers have lied on practically everything they said. They claimed they are University students, both of them at 300 level, but the 2 Universities have gone thru their records and said that no students like them exist. Then again, if you know how 419 operate the last thing they would do is send you money, talk less of paying 30K for a flight ticket. I am not sure that we should believe any claim by the killers as gospel truth, after all their 419 profession has been built based on lies and gross deception. These are guys with numerous fake IDs, International passports all with different names…so we are not even sure who they really are.

    Another thing the Police should investigate is perhaps Cynthia was not the only girl they murdered. So far, the Killers themselves admitted to deceiving, raping and robbing many other girls in the past but denied killing any of them. They could be lying and might have murdered many more, but their luck just ran out this time around. Why I say this is because when Cynthia was killed, the hotel deposited her in a motuary with nobody asking any questions. Even to a lay man it should have been clear that this lady was violated and strangled and the least to have been done was for the police to check out the hotel's cctv, which they did not, and Cynthia's corpse stayed unidentified for several weeks. This means if Cynthia parents were not powerful and forced the investigations to have been taken seriously, that would have been the end.

    Please and please, these killers are liars, cheats, and have built their livelihood on scamming and 419. Whatever they claim must not be believed but must be heard with a pinch of salt.

  7. Its just sad and shows man inhumanity to man. May her soul rest in peace.

  8. dear Aisha my heartfelt condolences to you and the entire osukogu family for the gruesome murder of cynthia.My prayer is that you are able to move on and be happy again while holding on to the good times you shared with her. some foundation l hope will be started in the direction of internet safety in order to share those memories with the world and help prevent such heinous crimes in future .she looked like someone who lit up the room.Be strong ,this too shall pass

  9. May God in His infinite mercies deliver us from the hands of the wicked. You wrote to eulogize her but something stuck out like a sore thumb. Early in her business life,she was able to sell items at three times the cost price; and I said to myself sheer'greed' and I was immediately put-off.

    I read in other accounts how the suspects got her to go on an expense-free business trip to Lagos and she fell for it. Again 'greed' at work.Nigerians aptly put it like this "Awuff they run belle".Please pardon me, I'm not trying to be holier-than-thou neither am I sitting in judgement over her but it's best we warn one another of these subtle temptations. In all these her family members were not aware of her business trip to Lagos on invitation of facebook friends!!! How sad!

    Please note, money is not the root of all evil. The Bible says the "For the LOVE of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they erred from the faith and pierced themselves through with many sorrows" I Tim 6:10.

    Please let's all be warned: God is not mocked, whatsoever a man or woman sows he or she will surely reap. If we sow after the flesh, we will of the flesh reap corruption but if we sow after the spirit, we will of the spirit reap eternal life in Christ Jesus. May that be the lot of all of us in Jesus' name.

    May God console her family and loved ones including all God-fearing people in the land in Jesus' name, Amen.

    1. @Tony Blake You're such a creep

      Is it a crime to sell something for thrice the cost price? Is it a sin? No!

      Is it a sin or 'greed' to accept a complimentary plane ticket from people you have every reason to believe are eager to have you as a customer? No!

      In the end, you're doing what you hypocritically claim not to be doing; you're standing there in judgement with a holier-than-thou attitude. And that's just plain foolish!

      I don't know whether legitimately pursing a business venture is now 'sowing after the flesh'. Pathetic!

  10. Aisha, I mourn wf u too, may her beautiful soul RIP! Buh pls,as her bosom frnd, dd she tell u where she was going to n abt the pple dy said sponsored her trip? Am so curious as we need to know what exactly happened? Hers is a very pathetic story

  11. She did nothing wrong by being a businesswoman,its the demons that killed her that are at fault. May they never know peace,may God rest Cynthia's soul…

  12. Aren't we all prejudiced? Especially by our own weaknesses?

    Udoka nwanne,…

    Laa n'udo!

    Ka mkpuruobi gi zuru ike na ndokwa. R. I. P.

  13. Aisha, accept my condolences. I can imagine the devastation and agony. Only God can heal the hearts of family and friends.

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