A 51 year old senior lecturer at the Department of Catering and Hotel Management, Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo, has been remanded by a Makurdi Upper Area Court on Monday for allegedly raping his 13-year-old housemaid.
The accused, Andrew Ogbuja, who was arrested last Friday, pleaded with the judge to temper justice with mercy and grant him bail to enable him to go back home and resolve the matter amicably considering his status, more so, that he was actually caught in the act.
Speaking through his counsel, Andrew Ogbuja promised to take full responsibility for the treatment of the victim, saying it was a family affair.
But the judge, Justice S. D. Kwen, rejected the plea and sent the lecturer to Makurdi Federal Prison pending the determination of the matter.
The victim, a JSS 1 pupil of the Federal Government College, Gboko, said her guardian’s son, Victor, was the first to rape her in 2013.
“It all started in 2013 when I turned five years old and went to live with my mother’s sister in Ugbokolo because there was no school in my village.
“So, when l was eight years old, the son started having sex with me and when the sister caught him, she reported him to their father, who scolded him. From there, the father also started doing the same thing by sleeping with me and l told my mother. My mother told my elder sister, who took me to Makurdi for checkup.
“Last year September, l fell ill and was taken to the Federal Medical Centre, Makurdi, where l spent two months and five days. In the hospital, they checked me and discovered that what my aunt’s son and his father did to me affected me and was responsible for my condition.
“My mother went to confront my aunt and the husband, but they did not take the matter seriously. I want my health back.”
The accused lecturer, Andrew Ogbuja, was alleged to have had carnal knowledge of 13-year-old Elizabeth while she lived in his house.
Prosecution had told the court that on August 8, 2018, at about 12:00 noon, the body of women lawyers (FIDA) in Benue State, in the company of one Mrs Rose Abah, reported the matter to the police.
The First Information Report (FIR), indicated that the complainant, Mrs Abah told the police that sometime in February 2018 when her daughter, one Elizabeth Ochanya Ogbanje aged 13 was sick and admitted at FMC Makurdi, she told her that, when she was staying with her cousin sister Felicia Ogbuja in Ugbokolo town between 2013 and 2015, the son of the same cousin sister by name Victor Ogbuja had canal knowledge of her.
The court further heard that the husband to the cousin sister, Andrew Ogbuja also had canal knowledge of the teenager and that during police investigation, the said accused, Andrew was arrested for committing the offence while his son, Victor is at large.
Police prosecutor, Inspector Patrick Sunday, told the court that the offence is contrary to section 97 and 284 of the penal code law of Benue state 2004 and therefore punishable according to the law therewith.
However, when the case was mentioned, no plea was taken because the court lacked the jurisdiction to hear the matter.
The case has been adjourned till September 24, 2018.