204 views | Kenechukwu Ofomah | July 30, 2020
A woman who does not want her name to be mentioned has accused a Policeman identified as Peter Ebah, serving at the Saakpenwaa Police Division in Tai Local Government Area of Rivers State of forcefully abducting and raping after she was arrested for not wearing a nose mask yesterday.
According to her, Mr. Ebah who detained her in the Police vehicle despite pleadings from her co-passengers tricked her that they were taking her to the Tai Police station but diverted to a guest house.
The widow explained that she was arrested while coming back from Bori to Eleme as at 5 pm on Tuesday but was detained till 10 pm before she was tricked to the guest house.
“I was returning from Bori where I went to drop my children and my mother. There is a checkpoint between Kpopie roundabout and Saakpenwaa, that’s where I met the policemen. Unfortunately, I wasn’t with my facemask and the Policeman, Mr Ebah asked me to come down. The driver came down to plead on my behalf and even offered me one of his face masks but he refused and insisted that I should come down. It was when he threatened to shoot at the vehicle that the driver drove off. Even when someone came to give them money to plead on my behalf, he refused maybe because he had other plans,” the young widow narrated.
Narrating her ordeal in the hands of the alleged randy police officer, the woman said the first guest house did not attend to him but the second hotel did, adding that the incident happened in the company of three other officers in the vehicle.
“They asked me to come down from the bus and drove me off. Because he had heard from the bus people that my husband is late, he wanted to take advantage of me. Instead of them to take me to a police station, they took me to a beer parlour. When I asked him why we did not go to the police station, he said because I was going to spend the night with him. I said no that I want to go home. He said since my husband is dead, that he wants to take care of me but I insisted, asking him if he was the one taking care of me since my husband died. But he warned me not to create a scene there. So I had no other option than to follow him inside and there he forced me to bed,” she lamented.
Meanwhile, some Human Rights Organizations have given two days ultimatum to Rivers State Police Command to produce the policeman for him face the wrath of the law.
Speaking on the matter, Former National Spokesman of Committee for the Defense of Human Rights, Henry Ekine said he expects the Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan to show that he does not tolerate human rights abuses by his officers.
In his words, “this is one of those extrajudicial actions of police officers and now is the time for the authorities to prove that they are not committed to fighting illegal practices in the Force only on paper. That particular officer involved should immediately be made to face the law. He should be arrested and prosecuted for the criminal offence. The Commissioner of Police should use this case to show his commitment to fighting crime and criminality.”
On his part, the Chairman, Rivers Civil Society Organization, Enefaa Georgewill warned against sweeping the incident under the carpet like other alleged offences committed by police officers in the State.
“We are giving the Command 48 hours to bring the suspect to book or the entire civil society in the state will proceed to occupy the command headquarters. The lady has identified the suspect and where he is serving so it is not a question of they don’t know the suspect. So, we think the Commissioner of Police should do the needful urgently because this is the height of irresponsibility from an officer of the law that is supposed to protect lives and property. There is no justification whatsoever for such action even if she is not putting on a facemask,” Georgewill maintained.
Meanwhile, the Rivers Police Command is yet to issue a statement on the matter as at the time of filing this report.