Parents of a four-year-old little girl in Ndioke Ishieke community, Ebonyi Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, Jennifer, who was defiled by the 14-year-old son of their neighbour, are now in anguish.
The incident took place on October 27, 2018. Before the incident happened, it was not their practice to leave her and two other siblings alone in the house.
Her father, Mr Sunday, told newsmen in Abakaliki, the state capital that they usually took them along wherever they went. But on the fateful day, the wife went to the farm while the husband embarked on another mission.
Sunday said that when he and the wife were about leaving their home, the alleged culprit, Nelson, volunteered to take care of the kids since he didn’t go to school that day as it was a Saturday.
The teenager’s offer of assistance seemed to be a relief to the couple, given the convenience it would provide to them. They never knew that behind his supposed kindness and innocent looks lay his evil plot, which unfolded soon after they left.
According to the account he was given, Sunday said that Nelson allegedly sneaked into their apartment and had carnal knowledge of their four-year-old daughter.
Hear Sunday: “The son of my neighbour who is about 14 years old defiled my daughter who is four years. Normally, we don’t leave our children alone at home. Wherever we go, my wife and I take them along.
So, on that fateful day, I was not around and my wife went to the farm. It was on a Saturday. So, when my wife was about going to the farm, the boy volunteered to look after them. He said that since that day was a Saturday, that he would look after them.
“So, my wife then left the children in his care. While my daughter and her younger sibling were lying down in our apartment, the boy went in to them. There was another older girl who was with them. The boy gave her a portion of the compound to cut grasses.
“He did that to keep her away from the house. So, while the girl was cutting the grass outside, he was busy inside my house defiling my daughter. Once the girl finished cutting that portion, he would quickly run out of my house and give her another portion just to keep her away,” he narrated.
The victim’s father said that when he returned he discovered that his daughter winced in pain while urinating. He said that the lad had earlier complained to her mother.
“When my wife returned from the farm, my daughter told her that the boy, Nelson, inserted his penis into her vagina. She complained that she was having pains while urinating,” he said.
Given her age, the minor couldn’t give comprehensive account of what transpired. All she said was: “Brother Nelson came into our house and he put his penis into where I urinate from and I started feeling pains. I was crying but he kept pushing.”
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, ASP Loveth Odah, who was called on the phone to confirm the incident as she did not pick calls made to her mobile phone. But the victim’s father said that the matter was reported to the police, which in turn referred them to the Family Law Centre located at the Women Development Centre, for prosecution.
Meanwhile, the Head of Department, Child Development in the state’s Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Mr Godwin Igwe, has called for full implementation of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law (VAPP) recently introduced in the State.
Igwe, who was visibly angry about the incident, expressed concern over the growing incidence of rape in the state. He, however, vowed that the state government, through the ministry, would ensure that perpetrators of such dastardly acts were brought to justice.
Igwe said: “This is a case of a minor of the first order, a child of about four years. A consultant physician at the Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, brought her to me with the father of the child.
“The doctor narrated to me how the child was brought to her at the hospital for medical examination in respect of allegation of rape. She said that after examining the child, she found out beyond any shadow of doubt that the child was actually raped,” he said.