A 33-year-old woman, identified as Mrs Ijeoma, yesterday narrated how a businessman and neighbor, Nwanne Nwaora, raped and impregnated her 12-year-old daughter (name withheld).
According to Mrs Ijeoma, a trader, who testified before an Ikeja High Court, Lagos, Nwaora is an alleged serial rapist who targets mostly children.
However, Nwaora, 40, is standing trial for allegedly defiling a child on November 10, 2015 at No 55 Aromire street Muri Busari Ogba.
While being led in evidence by the State prosecuting Counsel, Mr Y. G Oshoala, the victim’s mother said that her daughter remains the 6th child Nwaora had raped in their neighborhood.
She said, “Sometime in 2015, on a Tuesday precisely, I discovered a strange change on my daughter’s body. So I decided to watch her closely and monitor her movement.
“It was later that one of my neighbors, Nwanne Nwaora, then approached me and told me to look after my daughter properly because he had observed her moving around aimlessly. He advised me not to ask my daughter what happened to her or what the problem was. But that immediately raised my suspicion.
“And I insisted that I would ask her since I am her mother. I took my daughter into our private room, later that evening, and asked her what was wrong with her.
“She told me that Uncle Nwanne (the defendant) had raped her when I went to the market.
“I immediately carried her to Ikeja General Hospital for medical check up and after series of tests, it was confirmed that my daughter was pregnant. A HIV test was also conducted on my daughter.
“The hospital then referred us to Isokoko Police station to go and file a report. We went to the police station, issued a statement and the police came to my house the next day and arrested him at his shop.
“While at the police station, Nwaora denied raping my daughter but was insisting that he wanted some of his friends to come and bail him out.
“The District police officer (DPO) later told me that it was when his friends came for his bail that he opened up to them and confessed that he raped my daughter. The DPO got so angry with him that he ordered them to lock him up inside the cell.
“The next day, his younger brother came begging me to forgive him. The brother told me that he had warned Nwaora severally to stop raping or having sex with innocent children.
“His brother told me that it was because of an issue of child rape that made them run away from Delta State to Lagos State. I also have an eyewitness who was present with me when his brother told me this.
“The matter was later charged before an Ogba Magistrate Court, 4 while the government sent my child to ‘The Shelter’ owned by Bimbo Odukoya foundation.
“My daughter was kept at the Shelter for nine months until she was delivered of a baby girl. My son even donated blood to help her through the child delivery,” she said.
However, during cross-examination by the defence lawyer, Worer Obuagbaka, the witness said that the defendant had raped over six children and that her daughter was not his only victim.
“This man is a rapist. My daughter is not the only child he has raped. She is just the sixth. There are five other children who are victims. It was during a test at Mirabel Center that it was discovered that my daughter was pregnant,” she said.
Meanwhile, it could be recalled that at the last proceeding, the defendant told the court of his intentions to enter a plea bargain agreement with the Ministry of Justice.
The defendant through his lawyer, Obuagbaka begged the court to allow the matter be settled out of court for the interest of the toddler born as a result of the unlawful act.
Obuagbaka said, “If the case is settled out of court, and the defendant is asked to take care of the new child as well as the defiled child (complainant), that is enough punishment.
“It will also be in the interest of the new child who will go through trauma knowing that her father is languishing in jail”.
Justice Josephine Oyefeso thereafter adjourned the matter till January 21, 2019 for continuation of trial.