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Man abducts girl, 16, rapes, aborts pregnancy

By Joy Anyim

The Police in Lagos State say they have launched a manhunt for a man identified as Sochi Oba, who had allegedly abused a 16-year-old girl (name withheld).

Information has it that Oba had abducted the girl in October 2018, raped and impregnated her. He also forced his victim into taking abortion pills.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the wanted suspect, had lured the girl to his apartment on No.12, Divine Estate, Amuwo Odofin, camped her there for hours and engaged her in marathon sex.

The girl, who later regained her freedom, was threatened by the man not to let out a word on what he had done to her.

While still nursing the pain of losing her innocence in a cruel manner, the victim discovered she was pregnant.

On informing the suspect of the pregnancy, he forced the girl into taking some abortion pills, which resulted in heavy bleeding.

The excruciating pain and bleeding attracted the attention of the girl’s father, Mr. Remigius Iwuagwu. He questioned her to know what was wrong, and she had to open up.

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Iwuagwu claimed he had reported the matter to the Gender Unit of the Lagos State Police Command for investigation but was frustrated by the police.

He alleged a police invitation was extended to suspect, which was not honoured. He said the Festac Police Division that was instructed to see to the arrest of the suspect had acted in an unprofessional manner for the past four months.

Oba, who has since fled his residence, had also taken to blackmailing the girl and her family through phone calls and messages.

The Network on Police Reform in Nigeria (NOPRIN), a Civil Society Organisation, has taken up the matter for the family. In a petition to the police, the Network faulted the police for not being proactive.

Giving detailed account of what actually transpired between the said suspect and the girl, the National Co-ordinator of NOPRIN, Mr. Okechukwu Nwanguma said, “ The man had abducted and raped the girl. She got pregnant from the rape encounter and informed the man who raped her and the man asked her to take some abortion pills but she said she was afraid to use abortion pills.

“The guy insisted that she must take the pills (and actually brought the pills to her) otherwise, never to call him again because he was not responsible.

“Pressed by the man and unwilling yet to let her parents know, she took the pills and later developed complications, which resulted in heavy bleeding.

“Her father, now aware, took her to a hospital where she was admitted for days to stop the bleeding and save her life.

“Meanwhile, following the report lodged by the girl’s father, the Gender Unit served invitation on the man alleged to have raped, impregnated and forced the girl to procure illicit abortion. The man refused to turn up.”

Faulting the police for conducting itself in an unprofessional, Nwanguma said,  “Following unsuccessful efforts to arrest the culprit, who started avoiding his residence, the OC, Gender Unit, requested FESTAC Police Division, the nearest to the culprit’s residence, to help arrest the man and alert the unit.

“Again, FESTAC served the culprit another invitation, which was handed to the security guard at the residence, who later confirmed that he handed the invitation to him when he briefly sneaked into the house and left shortly after receiving the invitation. Again, he snubbed the police.

“The girl’s father told me that later, a lawyer appeared at FESTAC on behalf of the culprit, gave excuses why his client could not honour the police invitation but gave a date when he would bring him to the station. Till date, the culprit is yet to report and remains in hiding.

“Iwuagwu said the IPO at FESTAC has been collecting money from him, promising to help him arrest the culprit.

“But when he calls him to ask ‘how far’, he doesn’t take his calls. Sometimes, he’d switch off after rejecting his call.

“The man decided to keep a close watch at the culprit’s residence. He was later to learn from the security guard that the culprit had started removing his household property in an apparent bid to pack out of the house and evade arrest. He said he also alerted FESTAC police station, hoping they could lay ambush.

“On Saturday, the man was informed that someone came with a truck to evacuate the culprit’s remaining property and he got a policeman, who assisted him to arrest the man and then took him along with the truck containing the property to FESTAC police station.

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“His expectation was that FESTAC police would detain the goods until the culprit shows up and also treat the man, who tried to remove them on behalf of the culprit, as someone trying to aide a wanted suspect, who is on the run to evade justice. But the man wasn’t getting any cooperation from FESTAC police station.

The NOPRIN co-ordinator said the suspect, who is on the run, is calling for settlement outside police involvement.

“Occasionally, he would call the girl’s father to threaten him for reporting the case to the police instead of coming to him. He asked the girl’s father how much he wants from him to withdraw the matter from the police, but he told him he doesn’t need his money; only that he should report to the police.

“The culprit calls him with different numbers and when he tries to call him back on any of the numbers, they’re no longer available.

Nwanguma said he had spoken with both the OC Gender and the DPO, FESTAC police station on the matter, but they weren’t showing great interest in tracking the fugitive crime suspect.

“I called the Lagos Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Elkana Bala, who said he had an indepth discussion with OC Gender and had agreed on renewed efforts to track and apprehend the fugitive suspect,” he said.