By Chidi Nkwopara, OWERRI
RAPE- The absence of the presiding magistrate of Oke-Ovoro, Aboh Mbaise Magistrate Court, Mrs J. I. Austin-Okeke, Thursday, stalled the arraignment of Mr Ekeoma Ndudirichi, who allegedly raped a five-year-old nursery pupil (names withheld).
Speaking exclusively to Vanguard on strict grounds of anonymity, the Prosecutor said that “since the court did not sit today, we will take the suspect back into custody”.
Answering a question on when the suspect would be re-arraigned in court, the Prosecutor said: “This is an overnight matter. The Easter break is here with us. We will bring him back as soon as we are sure that the court would sit. How we will handle the matter thereafter, will be at the discretion of the court.”
He rebuffed every other pressure to disclose details of the matter and pleaded with Vanguard to “wait until hearing commences in court”.
The story that has continued to make the rounds in Umuoda Nguru is that the 28-year old suspect, who is also a native of the community, “waylaid the innocent minor when she was returning from school and lured her to an uncompleted building in the area and raped her”.
Narrating how the Aboh Mbaise Police Division got into the matter, the Youth President of Umuoda Nguru, Mr. Joseph Obi, said that soon after getting wind of the sordid incident, he interviewed the victim.
“After the little girl narrated her ordeal to me, I took the youth executives to the suspect’s family home. When we realized that he was not prepared to tell us the truth, we reported the matter to the police”, Obi said.
Continuing, Obi recalled that the suspect scampered into safety when he realized that the police was coming for him.
“The suspect, however, resurfaced when he learnt that police refused to release his father, who was taken in his stead”, Obi said.