Chidimma Ezeokoli (aged 23) and his 11-year-old teenage brother (name withheld) have been accused of repeatedly having unlawful carnal knowledge of a seven-year-old girl in Oko, in the Aguata Council of Anambra.
The mother of the victim, Miss Chinenyenwa Ozulumba, (27), who narrated her story on Sunday in Awka, said the boys were two biological children of her landlady, Mrs Nnabuife Okoli.
Ozulumba, a single mother, said her daughter lost her virginity forcefully to her hosts because she trusted them and entrusted her to their care whenever she went to work in a nearby bar.
She said the accommodation was secured for her by her employer, who was also from Agulezechukwu town where she hails from.
Ozulumba said because she did not want to expose her little daughter to her work environment due to the social hazard, she decided to always leave her behind with her landlady whom she had taken as her adopted mother.
She said that on Aug. 22, the day that she did not go to work, she overhead her children making jokes of their escapades whenever she was away and after a while, her daughter began to cry in guilt.
Ozulumba said when she asked her daughter what the matter was, she told her that she and the sons of the landlady used to have sex.
The young mother said when she drew the attention of the landlady to the revelation, she wished it away.
“A 23-year-old boy and an 11-year-old boy have allegedly been defiling my daughter; when I got to know about it, I reported to their mother and she did not show any form of amazement or remorse, making me feel that she was aware of it.”
“At that point, I took my daughter inside and sent for the younger boy who confirmed to me that it was true that he was having sex with my daughter in front of his elder sister.”
“The minor recalled that there was a day they were having sex with my daughter and she was crying but their mother did not react to her anguish.”
“When Chidinma heard that I am now aware of the rape going on with my daughter, he started threatening to beat me up, asking if I did not do it while growing up.”
“At that point, their mother joined in threatening violence against me and my daughter.”
“That was how they started threatening to beat my child and even take her to a shrine if she dares to include the name of the 23-year-old again, telling her to say that it was only the 11-year-old that slept with her,” she said.
Ozulumba said that since she noticed the violation of her daughter, she had visited the Police several, as well as the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital (COOUTH), Awka, which examined the victim for the first time.
Ozulumba recalled that at COOUTH, after examination, she was verbally informed that there was penetration but they refused to make the report available, thus making it a challenge for her to prove her case.
She said she also reported the matter to the Police Area Command, Uga, Aguata, where she was issued a Police Medical Report form but was not able to get the report after visiting COOUTH repeatedly for three weeks.
“This became a challenge for me, as the doctor that examined my child refused to write the report and the Police said they needed the result so they can charge the matter to court.”
“That was how I later went to the Enugu-Ukwu General Hospital for another examination, where she was tested and scanned and we were issued a report.”
“According to her, the report showed that the hymen was torn, and some bruises were on it,” she said.
Ozulumba said her former employer and landlady had been threatening her to withdraw the matter or face untoward consequences.
She said a Police officer visited her village and invited her to come to the Police X-Squad Unit in Awka with the aim of making her a defendant in her own case.
Ozulumba said she had visited the Police X-Squad in the company of the Coordinator of Child Rights Brigade International (CRIB), an NGO, where she and her child were asked to make statements.
“All I need is justice for my daughter, I am not with anybody in this matter but God and people of good heart; the suspects should be made to face the law and prove their innocence and if they are found guilty, they should be punished so that others will learn not to take advantage of the girl child,” she said.
Mr Obiora Nnaemeka, Coordinator of CRIB in Anambra, said the matter was reported to their office on Sept. 3 and they had been following the development since then, assuring that they would stand by the victim and her mother in the course of the crisis.
Nnaemeka said they had written to the Police Area Command where the matter was first incidented that his group was interested in the matter and urged them to effect the arrest of the suspects.
Dr Basil Nwankwo, Chief Medical Director of COOUTH, however, said he was not aware of the matter and advised that the victims should come up with a written petition.
Ezeokoli, the mother of the suspects said “nothing happened, the girl is just trying to rope them; it only involves the small boy,” she said.
SP Mohammed Haruna, Police/Public Relations Officer in Anambra, said the matter had yet to be reported at the Command Headquarters.
@ Vanguard Newspaper