By Fortune Eromosele, Abuja
The trial of Peter Nwachukwu, husband of the late gospel singer, Osinachi Nwachukwu, continued, yesterday, before Justice Njideka Nwosu-Iheme of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, with the testimony of the third prosecution witness, PW3, Amarachi Eze.
The 42-year-old Amarachi Eze, who is the twin sister to late Osinachi, told the court how Peter Nwachukwu allegedly beats Osinachi with mopstick and calls her names like ‘ashawo’ (prostitute), ‘thief’.
Led-in-evidence by the Prosecution Counsel, Aderonke Imana, Osinachi’s twin sister, who chose to speak in Igbo but translated to the hearing of the court by Iheohara Chukwuka and Ufomadu Justina, narrated to the court how Peter allegedly maltreated and starved Osinachi.
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She said: “After Osinachi had finished a programme and she was given honorarium (about N40,000), she put the money in her bag.
“When the husband opened her bag, he called her a thief and ‘ashawo’ and beat her. I then asked my sister, if there was anything we can do to be getting her money direct?
“Then she replied that if she tried that, the husband will beat her, and that she didn’t know the reason why he was beating her.
“My sister started suffering when she married Peter. She called me and told me that he uses mopstick to hit her. The husband beats her as if she was not a human being.
“One day, my sister called and told me what was happening to her; that her stomach was disturbing her and that she thought she had ulcer.
“I told my sister to tell her husband to give her money, and she told me that her husband will tell her there’s no money and beat her.”
When asked what transpired on Osinachi’s sick bed before her death, Amarachi Eze narrated in tears to the court: “The beating contributed to what took my sister to the hospital.
“My sister called to inform me that her chest was disturbing her, so I asked her if she had told her husband, and she said he would not listen to her. The pain continued until March 23.
“Even when she went to the hospital, my sister called me and said that I should come to Abuja. I told her ‘you know who your husband is, he will not allow me’. She said I should forget about the husband that I should come.“
Amarachi said she later went to see her sister in Abuja, who started crying on seeing her. “I asked her why she was crying and that I was already there.
“So, we stayed a while before the husband came. He asked me what I was doing there; why did I come to his house, but I told him ‘I didn’t come to your house’ and that I was in the hospital.”
She added: “I later told him that I was sorry for not telling him that I was coming. After I told him, he continued shouting.
“Osinachi told her husband that since I had begged and asked for forgiveness, he should forgive me. That was when I now told him, ‘Papa, I’m sorry; don’t be angry. He shouted and said, ‘madam, I’m going out’; that I should leave that somebody was coming.
“Peter told me that he will separate me from my sister because he doesn’t want me and my sister together.
“Then I went to one side of the bed and stayed. We stayed there till after 11pm, when he told me that I should go out from there and find where to sleep.”
Amarachi said she left that night and returned the following morning, only for her sister’s husband to ask the nurse to chase her out.
“Osinachi begged me to leave. I hugged her three times and I told her that I love her and told her that I will come to her house and her husband will not be able to stop me.
“When I got back to Enugu, I called him, but as he heard my voice, he cut the phone. I then sent him a text, saying: “Please Osinachi is my twin sister, don’t separate us.“
Amarachi added that her sister called the following day, asking why she texted her husband. “I told her that there was nothing bad in what I told him. Osinachi then told me not to call or text her husband again. That I should not even call her and that she would call me.“
Amarachi said that based on that she stopped calling her sister, just to make her happy…until she was later called about her death. “From the moment I was told, I started calling Peter, but he refused to take my calls.
“I started calling my sister’s number; her phone was ringing but nobody picked up. My mother called Peter but he didn’t take tha call either.
“It was around 7pm that Peter called my mother and she answered him as though nothing was happening. That was when he told her that Osinachi was dead.
“Then he called me, and I said that ‘this one that you called me, hope all is well? He then said the wife that he married was dead.
“And I reminded him that ‘you said you will separate us!”
After the witness was discharged from the witness box, Justice Njideka Nwosu-Iheme adjourned till July 15 for further hearing.