Rather than celebrate like their fellow children who are happy and secured, they are battling the harshness life is throwing at them. They have become endangered species in the hands of men who take pleasure in defiling them, UCHENNA INYA, in Abakaliki, reports on the increase in sexual abuse against minors in Ebonyi State.
In Ebonyi, children are no longer safe, as men in their 40s and 50s up to 70s are in the habit of sleeping with underage girls. Unfortunately, most of the defiled children turned victims by their parents ignorance. Their parents are ignorant of the fact the people whom they entrust with the task of looking after the kids are actually the perpetrators of evil.
In facts, some parents go extra mile to send their female children to go and do domestic work for some of these men especially if the man is not married or not living with anybody, believing that the men would return the good gesture with material gifts or cash. But how wrong were they?! In shock and disappointment, the parents of these children see opposite character from the men who take advantage of them and defile them.
This has become a common occurrence in Ebonyi. In many cases, parents and guardians of the children compromise the future of the children rape victims by agreeing to settle out of court with the men who defile their children. In Afikpo North local government of the state, Simon Alobu, 70, was involved in defiling a 7 year old orphan, Favour.
Alobu lives in the same compound with Favour and her aunt, Enya Martha. Alobu popularly known as papa Eke is now in police custody for allegedly hypnotizing and repeatedly raping Favour, an orphan. He has been defiling Favour since 2014. The suspect ripped off Favour’s bottom with razor blade where he presumably apply some charms to prevent the girl from revealing his identity until the girl revealed his illicit acts on her after attending a crusade at Adoration Ministry, Enugu owned by a Charismatic Catholic Priest Rev.
Fr. Ejike Mbaka. Favour is facing health challenge with a body odour following the defilment. She is yet to recieve adequate medical treatment. Alobu was handed over to the police by a special court in the state known as family law centre where the matter was reported by Favour’s aunt. Ironically, Alobu is a married man with three wives and 14 children.
Although none of the wives and children is living with him. One of his wives was divorced while another is dead. The remaining one left him and went to her son who is living outside the area. Investigation revealed that little Favour together with her siblings, moved to her maternal house where her aunt lives following the death of her parents.
Favour’s aunt said she became aware of the girl’s condition after she complained of severe pains in her private. According to the woman, Alobu agreed that he has been taking advantage of Favour for about five times. “The suspect confessed that he has had carnal knowledge of the girl and that he did it under the influence of alcohol.
” In his words to Favours’ aunt, “I actually defiled her but it was under alcohol.” He however denied the allegation that he raped Favour’s aunt when she was at a tender age. After listening to the rape case, Chairman of the centre, Mrs. Elizabeth Nwali invited the police to arrest the man with a promise to follow up the matter to the local conclusion.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Loveth Odah said the suspect is in police custody and will be arraigned. “The man has confessed to the offence and we are ready to charge the matter to court. There is no much to investigate, we are only waiting for medical report to be a back up to prove the matter in the court.
The girl will be subjected to medical examination and at the end of the day, we will see her health condition,” she said. The case of Favour is coming after man identified simply as Nwoja, allegedly raped nine female children in Onueke, Ezza South local government area of the state. Nwoja, a cab driver in his 40’s, was reportedly accused of defiling the nine female children between ages six and 10. He was alleged to have been defiling the girls for long.
One of the affected children was said to have allegedly contracted infection following the defilement. However, the bubble bust when one of the mothers noticed that her little girl was experiencing pains in her private part, apparently due to injuries sustained during penile penetration. The girl’s parents almost collapsed in shock when the child revealed that Nwoja had serially carnal knowledge of her.
The man didn’t just insert his fingers into the girls’ private parts, he also inserted his penis. One of the victims, identified only as precious said Nwoja had had sex with her about five times, adding that he usually does it in secluded areas, including inside his car. The 10-year-old said, “Sometimes, I would be in a deep sleep, he would come and carry me to a corner in the yard and do it.
“Last time, he carried me while I was sleeping in the house and took me to the bush, at the back of our yard. He asked me to pull off my clothes. When I refused, he tore them off, removed his own clothes and raped me. “He also used to have sex with me inside his car. He usually parks the car at the back of the compound,” Precious noted. Narrating her experience, another victim, Amarachi, said that it started one night when her father sent her on errand.
The suspect approached and requested for sex. “When he came to me and said he wanted to have sex with me, I ran, but he caught and dragged me into the bush. He removed my pants and raped me. I shouted, but no one heard me because the place was lonely and far from where people reside.
“Afterwards, he used his handkerchief to clean my body,” Amarachi recounted. Some other affected children alleged the man often times inserted his fingers into their private parts. One of the parents, Mrs. Elizabeth Nweke said, “I was bathing my little daughter and massaging her body when I noticed she was hurting. I attempted to wash her body but she would always remove my hand whenever I got to her private part area, she would wince in pains.
“I asked her what happened to her and she told me Nwoja used to remove her pant and his own, and would insert his penis into her private part. Mrs. Nweke said she reported the matter to members of the community. Nwoja, a father of three, was immediately summoned for questioning. After much interrogation, the suspect allegedly admitted to the crime. Another parent, Monday Obaji, said Nwoja was handed over to the police in Onueke.
According to reports, the parents were shocked to see him at home that same day that he was reportedly arrested. The parents alleged that the police were trying to sweep the matter under the carpet. The Chairperson of Family Law Centre, Mrs. Elizabeth Nwali, charged with the responsibility of handling such cases, explained that the Centre petitioned the State Criminal Investigations Department, SCID, following anxiety over the suspect’s sudden release from detention.
Confirming the defilement of the children, the Chairperson said the centre would ensure justice was done. She, however, called on parents to avoid sending their underage girls on errands in the night, to avoid being raped or sexually molested. Meanwhile, Director Child Welfare in the State Ministry of Women Affairs and Socio Development, Mr.
Godwin Igwe has condemned the increase of child rape and abuse in the state. Speaking to our correspondent, he noted that the rate at which children were sexually abused was worrisome and blamed the situation on the inability of the relevant agency in the state to ensure justice for the victims.
He urged parents and caregivers not to compromise the future of any child who is a victim of rape by accepting to settle the matter out of court. He stressed the need to rehabilitate rape victims psychologically, socially and give them proper health care. Igwe called on the public to empathize with rape victims instead of condemning them.
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