It is undeniable that in today’s world, moral decadence has entirely superseded essential moral ideals. This devouring phenomenon is to blame for some of Nigeria’s greatest challenges. A civilization in which teenagers focus on how to enrich themselves by any means and control great money at a young age, which they attain through ritual murdering, rather than on how to make tomorrow better than today or how to invent new technologies to automate processes involved in our daily activities (Afuye, 2013). Ritual refers to a collection of processes and orders for performing religious deeds or rituals (Shujaa 2009). Every religious ritual necessitates the offering of a sacrifice (Stebbins 2010). This necessitates a sacrifice. In Nigerian society, ritual killing is a widespread occurrence. Hundreds of Nigerians have died as a result of ritual killers, often known as “Head Hunters,” according to Nwakanma and Abu (2020). The ritual killers roam around looking for human parts such as heads, breasts, tongues, and sex organs, which are needed by witch doctors, juju priests, traditional medicine men and women, and/or occultists for dubious sacrifices or the manufacture of various magical sections (Igwe, 2010). In today’s Nigeria, ritual killing has taken on a whole new meaning. The scene has been dubbed the “Reign of the Ritualists” by many publications (Elesho 2004). Kidnapping someone with bad intentions is done in a variety of ways, notably for rituals. Many of those kidnapped for such reasons are women and children. Some of the kidnappers who were caught with their victims after they were dead or half-dead testified about their heinous crimes (Aiyetan, 2003). There are several accounts of diverse kidnapping strategies; some persons vanished after picking or touching items put as a trap by ritualists or kidnappers. It appears that ritual murders are more prominent in Nigeria during specific times of the year, such as the weeks running up to Christmas and during some yearly pilgrimages. It is widely assumed that people sacrifice human beings in order to obtain money to spend during such celebratory periods. There have been documented examples of people murdering their wives, husbands, mothers, or even children in order to carry out money-making rituals (Aiyetan, 2003). Aghawenu (202).


Our traditional traditions have been significantly endangered in recent years by vanity or material life, as evidenced by numerous foreign media articles. This has shifted our perspective and orientation away from religion and patriotism and toward materialism, resulting in moral degradation. The causes of such decay can be traced to the breakdown of family institutions, lack of gainful employment for parents and school dropouts, preferential treatment of the wealthy over the honest and knowledgeable in society, corruption, poverty, inflation, and adoption of social practices, all of which encourage young people to engage in get-rich-quick schemes such as prostitution, robbery, kidnapping, and, most importantly, ritual killing. According to Salisbury (2012), persons who engage in ritual killings believe they are doing something good. With the recurrence of ritual killings in the country, one is forced to wonder why such a violent and barbaric deed survives, and what impact it will have on social and cultural norms, particularly on citizen security. Although numerous scholars and social scientists have proposed alternative answers. While some scholars attribute the problem to the country’s socioeconomic conditions, particularly as ritual killings rise during times of economic hardship, others argue that home video story lines about ritually acquired wealth have contributed to ritual killing because youth and adolescent tend to emulate what they see. Others have argued that the frequency of ritual killing in the twenty-first century is due to traditional beliefs in fetish and ritual religious rituals.


The overall goal of this research is to look into the impact of ritual killings on Nigeria’s sociocultural decline. The study’s objectives are as follows:

i. To determine the nature of the ritual killings carried out by Ibadan’s youth.


ii. To find out why young people in Ibadan participate in rituals.


iii. To see if young ritualism jeopardizes social purity and life security in society.


iii. Determine whether Nigerian society’s high degree of ritualism relates to the loss of cultural and moral values.


HO1: Youth ritualism does not jeopardize societal holiness or the safety of individuals in society.

HO2: The high rate of ritualism in Nigerian society does not contribute to the loss of cultural and moral values.


The study’s findings will be useful to policymakers, Nigerian youth, and religious organizations. The study’s findings will inform policymakers about the necessity to adopt guiding principles to prevent ritual killing and to punish individuals who engage in this demonic practice. The study will also underline to the government the importance of introducing poverty alleviation programs, job possibilities, and entrepreneur support, as they will go a long way in reducing criminal behavior among jobless adolescents. More specifically, the study will emphasize the importance of intensifying moral education instruction in schools and universities, as well as encouraging teachers/lecturers who teach moral education to be role models for our kids, among other things, in order to lower the risk of youth suicide.


The focus of this research is on the impact of ritual killings on Nigeria’s sociocultural decline. The study will go on to investigate the nature and purpose of Nigerian youth’s ritual killings. It will look into whether youth ritualism contributes to the erosion of social values in society, as well as whether a high rate of ritualism contributes to moral decadence in Nigeria. However, the study is limited to the South-West region, with a focus on the Ibadan city in Oyo State.


The researchers ran into some minor roadblocks while conducting the study, as with any human endeavor. The scarcity of literature on the impact of ritualism on societal decline was a major stumbling block. Obtaining relevant materials, books, or information, as well as the data collection process, took a significant amount of effort and organization. The study was also constrained in time because it only looked at the South-West region with a focus on Ibadan, Oyo State. As a result, the findings of this study cannot be generalized to other locations or states, leaving a need for future research.


Ritualism, often known as ritual killings, is a violent and extreme kind of criminal homicide in which the victim’s vital organs are removed for use in “holy” rites by the slayers.

Moral development is concerned with the emergence, evolution, and comprehension of morality from childhood to maturity. Morality develops during the course of a person’s life and is influenced by their experiences and actions when confronted with moral dilemmas at various stages of physical and cognitive development.

Moral decay is defined as a significant drop in a society’s moral values. There appears to be a deterioration or breakdown in upholding our societal values, beliefs, norms, and ethical standards, as well as a fall’ in the moral standard of the society.


D. Aiyetan, D. Aiyetan, D. Aiyet (2003, December 29). Tell, p. 25 in Reign of the Ritualists.

Deji Ayegboyin, Deji Ayegboyin, Deji Ayegboyin “Sacrifice,” in Molefi Kete Asante and Ama Mazama’s Encyclopaedia of African Religion, edited by Molefi Kete Asante and Ama Mazama, 2009. Sage Publications International, Inc., is based in California.


R. a. Elesho (2004, August 23). Rituals that are gruesome. Page 18 of The News.


Ritual Killing and Pseudoscience in Nigeria, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Igwe, L Skeptical Briefs is an acronym for “skeptical briefs.” 14th Edition (2). At 3:59 p.m. on January 29, 2015, I checked my email.


L. Igwe, L. Igwe, L. Igwe, L. Igwe, L. Igwe, L. Igwe, L. I The International Humanist and Ethical Union is a non-profit organization that promotes human rights around the world. The African Commission on Human and People’s Rights is holding its 48th session in Banjul, Gambia, from November 10 to 24.


“Ritual Murder?” Jean La Fontaine, Jean La Fontaine, Jean La Fontaine, Jean La Fontaine, Jean La Fontaine, Jean La Font Open Anthropology Cooperative Press, Interventions Occasional Paper Series #3.

Leave a Comment