Ochanya: Court says wife, mother of alleged rapists have case to answer

June 25, 2020
7 Views

The Federal High Court sitting in Makurdi yesterday dismissed the ‘no case to answer’ prayed by Mrs Felicia Ochiga- Ogbuja, wife of the Polytechnic lecturer who allegedly raped a 13-year-old Ochanya Ogbanje, who later died of complications arising from the rape.

Mrs Ogbuja, 43, was arraigned by the Federal Government through its agency, National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) on a two-count charge.

In the suit marked: FHC/MKD/CR/12/209, Mrs Ogbuja who is a staff at the Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo and who had filled no-case submission and she is standing trial on two counts;

“That you, Felicia Ochiga-Ogbuja (Female) 43 years of Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo, Benue State, sometime between 2014 and 2018, in Ugbokolo, Benue State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did omit to take action against the sexual exploitation of one Elizabeth Ochanya Ogbanje (Female) 13 years by your husband, Andrew Ogbuja and your son, Victor Ogbuja, thereby committing an offence contrary to section 13 (4) (b) of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015.

“That you, Felicia Ochiga-Ogbuja (Female) 43 years of Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo, Benue State, sometime between 2014 and 2018, in Ugbokolo, Benue State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did keep, detain or harbour one Elizabeth Ochanya Ogbanje (Female) 13 years, knowing that she is likely to be sexually exploited by your husband, Andrew Ogbuja and your son, Victor Ogbuja, thereby committing an offence contrary to Section 15 (b) of the Trafficking in Persons Prohibition Enforcement and Administration Act, 2015.”

Mrs Ogbuja, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Ruling on no-case submission, trial judge, Justice M.O. Olajuwon held that the prosecution had led substantial evidence to warrant the defendant to enter her defence.

ALSO READ: Ogoni women demand 30% inclusion of women in clean-up process

According to the court, “The prosecution in this matter has put substantial evidence before the court to warrant the defendant to enter her defence.

“Consequently, the defendant’s no-case-submission is hereby dismissed.

Justice Olajuwon, however, adjourned the case till July 27, 2020, for Mrs Ogbuja to open her defence.

It would be recalled that the prosecution counsel, Mr Ja’afaru Ayitogo called six witnesses, amongst which was Dr Babarinde Ojo, a consultant pathologist in the Department of Histopathology, Benue State University Teaching Hospital, Makurdi.

Mr Andrew Ogbuja, a senior lecturer at Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo and wife are standing trial on the alleged rape of 13-year-old Ochanya who was living with them.

Little Ochanya died on October 17, 2018, due to complications arising from the alleged sexual molestation she suffered in the hands of Mr Ogbuja and son, Victor Ogbuja who was a final year student of Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, he is still at large.

Both Mr and Mrs Ogbuja have been remanded at the Makurdi prison, their son, Victor is reportedly still at large although he has not been officially declared wanted by the police or any security agency or the court.

When the report of Ochanya’s death spread in October 2018 following complications arising from the alleged serial sexual assault, it provoked national outrage and demonstrations across the country with calls from human rights activists for the arrest and prosecution of Mr Ogbuja and his son, Victor.

YOU SHOULD NOT MISS THESE HEADLINES FROM NIGERIAN TRIBUNE

Court Authorises Giadom To Proceed With APC NEC Meeting
A High Court of Justice sitting in Jos, Plateau State, has granted an Order compelling the Acting National Chairman of APC, Chief Victor Giadom, to proceed with the NEC meeting fixed for Thursday, June 25th, 2020… Read Full Story

APC NEC: Buhari Was Ill-Advised, Says Ajimobi Faction
Senator Abiola Ajimobi faction of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), has said that its faction of the National Working Committee will not participate in the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting… Read Full Story

Fayemi Denies Taking Giadom To Buhari
The Ekiti State governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has denied media reports that he took the acting national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Victor Giadom, to the Presidential Villa to meet President Buhari… Read Full Story

Nigerian High Commission Showed Us Land Documents, Says Ghanaian Foreign Minister
Staff of the Nigerian High Commission in Accra have produced documents to prove that the government of Nigeria owns the land where security operatives partly demolished a building last Friday… Read Full Story

Ghana Offers To Rebuild Nigeria’s Demolished Building
The Ghanaian government has offered to rebuild the structure belonging to the Nigerian High Commission which was demolished by some unknown people on Friday, June 19… Read Full Story

We Are Ready For Any Future Epidemic — Oyo Govt
THE Oyo State government said its response to the COVID-19 pandemic has helped the state to overhaul its emergency response system and ensure it has in place permanent structures to tackle any… Read Full Story

Reps To Probe Federal Ministry Of Water Resources Over ₦343m Expenditure Without Vouchers
The House of Representatives on Wednesday resolved to carry out a comprehensive investigation into how the sum of N343 million spent by the Ministry of Water Resources and for what projects as well as why the Ministry refused to give the vouchers covering the amount to the Auditor General for audit… Read Full Story

EDITORIAL: The Influx Of Foreign Herdsmen
LAST Tuesday, the House of Representatives called on the Federal Government to prevent herdsmen in other countries from entering Nigeria. Consequently, the House scheduled a meeting with the heads of security agencies in the country on how to checkmate illegal entry by foreign herders. The Green Chamber’s resolution followed… Read Full Story

You may be interested

EPL: Norwich City relegated for record fifth time after West Ham thrashing
News
News

EPL: Norwich City relegated for record fifth time after West Ham thrashing

admin - July 11, 2020

Norwich City has been relegated from the Premier League for a record fifth time. The Canaries needed to avoid defeat…

Another Oba is dead in Ogun
News
1 views
News
1 views

Another Oba is dead in Ogun

admin - July 11, 2020

Another prominent traditional ruler has died in Ogun State, making it four in a week, DAILY POST reports. The monarch…

COVID-19: NCDC officially certifies Kwara as test centre
News
1 views
News
1 views

COVID-19: NCDC officially certifies Kwara as test centre

admin - July 11, 2020

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, has officially designated Kwara State as a COVID-19 pandemic test center in the…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.