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Groups call for transfer of rape case over alleged delay by NSCDC


By Uchenna Ugwu

A cross section of Civil Society Organisations and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) in Ebonyi state, have called for the transfer of a rape case from the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to the Nigerian Police for appropriate action.

The case involves one Mr Kelechi Opoke over alleged rape of a 12-year old girl.

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Opoke was arrested by the NSCDC for allegedly raping the minor.

The State Coordinator, Gender-Based Violence Taskforce, Mrs FaithVin Nwanchor, demanded for handover of the case to appropriate authorities to prosecute the suspect accordingly and ensure justice for the survivor.

Nwanchor, a legal practitioner, said the delay was over a month, alleging that the suspect was freed without prosecution.

“I have being to NSCDC over times concerning the matter to be transfered and handled by appropriate quarters but to no avail.

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“Justice delayed is justice denied, we want the case to be transferred,” Nwanchor said.

Mr Christopher Okorie, State Coordinator National Human Rights Commission who also expressed dissatisfaction over the delay, called on the NSCDC to transfer the matter immediately to the Police Command for proper action.

“Please move the matter to the police because the protesters have lost confidence in the command’s conduct towards the matter.

“Utterances by officers of the command, against the protesters is a violation of their rights ,” Okorie said.

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However, the Director, Human Rights and Conflict Resolution, Mr George Etemaso, also demanded for the transfer of the case to the police.

“We want a date for the arraignment or if the command is unable to provide the date, then they should transfer it to the police,” Etemaso said.

Meanwhile, the State Commandant, NSCDC, Mr Terrumun Tihi-Gbue while addressing the protesters, stated that the case was still ongoing.

Tihi-Gbue, who was represented by his Deputy Commandant, Mr Celestine Ukeoma, assured them of results on the matter to prosecute the suspect.

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“We have not dismissed the case as alleged. You will get a positive answer, please calm down.

On the conduct of the officers against the protest, he said “it will be handled”. (NAN)

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