Daily Trust (Abuja)

6 February 2013

Nigeria: Man Petitions AGF Over Alleged Rape of Teenage Girl

Following the case of an alleged rape on his cousin said to have been committed on December 14, 2012, Mr E. U. Unoh, (ESQ) of Pipeline Extension II, Kubwa, has written a petition to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister for Justice, Mohammed Bello Adoke, to order for a 'thorough investigation' of the matter.

In the petition, a copy made available to our reporters, Unoh alleged that on December 14, 2012 at about 8p.m., his 17-year-old cousin (name withheld), went to buy water in a house around the area when one Daniel Adejoh, the suspect, allegedly lured her into the house and forcefully had sex with her.

According to him, when the cousin reported the matter at home, he and his wife rushed to the place where a mild drama ensued.

"We followed her to the premises to verify the story. In line with what we had agreed, my wife walked ahead of me. We were suddenly accosted by one of the tenants, who claimed to be a dismissed soldier and younger brother to the owner of the house. He asked us to leave the premises. The water seller, one Kenneth Enaifoghe, the actual younger brother to the owner of the house as it turned out, stated confidently that no rape incident had taken place on the premises.

"Things quickly got very heated and rowdy. With my cousin intimidated and shouted down by most of the tenants who came out of their rooms, we left for Byazhin Police Station where we laid a complaint. Two policemen followed us," he stated.

The petitioner further alleged that the suspect had admitted committing the offence during police investigation but said it was a case of consensual sex.

"Daniel Adejoh admitted both to tenants in the compound where the rape took place and to the police that he had indeed slept with the victim but denied that it was rape, claiming that she was his lover. The girl was examined by a female doctor at Kubwa General Hospital. There was evidence of sexual intercourse. The man was also screened for syphilis, HIV and other infections. Thankfully, all were negative," he added.

However, Unoh alleged that for reason unknown to him, there has been pressure on him to drop the case, alleging that the police have been playing down the case.

"There has been tremendous pressure on me and my family to back off the case. The pressure has come from the police, relatives of the suspects and even tenants of the premises where the incident took place. But we are determined to ensure that my cousin gets her day in court. Because of this well publicized resolve, I have reason to believe that there is a systematic attempt to weaken and compromise the case.

"The police, rather than focusing on the suspect's culpability, seem intent on playing down the heinous nature of the offence against my cousin by insulting her and criticizing the fact that she is not a virgin. My humble view is that even a commercial sex worker can be the subject of a rape. Thus, an accused person cannot use the sexually active status of a rape victim as a defence to rape," he alleged.

He therefore prayed the Attorney General to "take over the matter with a view to requesting the police to reinvestigate the case and ensure that justice is done to the parties."

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