By Ike Uchechukwu
CALABAR—Women in their hundreds, yesterday, took to the streets in Okuni Community in Ikom LGA of Cross River State protesting the gang raping of one of them by a five man robbery squad in the presence of her husband.
Vanguard gathered that the incident took place November 6, 2017 on a cocoa plantation where the five-man gang stole bags of cocoa beans and gang-raped one of the wives of the farmers to the point of unconsciousness in presence of her husband.
One of the protesters, Mrs Glory Eba, told Vanguard that the woman was taken to a community health centre and the case reported to the police, which led to the arrest of one of the rapists, who was identified by the victim to have been the first to rape her.
Her words: “Sadly, the major culprit, who was meant to fish out other perpetrators, was released on bail and the matter charged to court, but when the matter came up early March this year, the rape case was absent from the charge and the medical report missing from the file.
“This is the reason the women have decided to take to the streets of Ikom to demand that the case be revisited and that Justice prevails.
The group, in a petition submitted to the Police Command in Ikom and the local government council, are demanding that Police produce the rapists and the original medical report as well as explain the lacuna in the investigation and prosecutions.
Another protester, Grace Abini, said: ”We the women of Olulumoh are angry over what happened in our land,.
“A group of men went into our bush and raped our daughter and we took this problem to the Police Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, men.
“Along the line they turned it to a robbery case, saying it was not rape. But we, the women of Olulumoh, are angry that is why we are putting on black and black to let the world know that we are aggrieved.
“We want government to produce that person that went into our bush and raped our daughter that is why we are here because they have turned it to a robbery case. But we know of a truth that rapists went into our bush to rape our daughter; we want the persons brought to book.”
Contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Irene Ugbo, said: “Justice delayed is not justice denied.
“The Nigerian Police will take a fresh look into the matter with a view to fishing out the perpetrators and bringing them to book as quickly as possible.”