These atrocities actually happen and it saddens our heart that while we fight problems like poor governance, we have to watch and ‘pray’ so the future of ‘ordinary citizens’, in this case, children, are not jeopardised or ended in such brutal ways as Ochanya Ogbanje‘s life.
According to a report by a Twitter user (asked to remain anonymous), Ochanya’s mother died, and when her father could not take care of her, she was sent to her aunt’s family in 2013; when she was 8-years-old. It is from then that her main problems started.
Her guardian — Andrew Ogbuja — and his son — Victor Ogbuja — took turns to rape her from then until she turned 13. She was raped both anally and vaginally; sexually and physically assaulted over and over again. The two men (Father and Son) who would occasionally drug her before molesting her, issued death threats to her if she spoke about it to anyone.
In February 2018, she collapsed and this time, was bedridden for 2 months because she was terribly ill. In June, a caregiver who runs an Orphanage in Otukpo got interested in her case and decided to take her to the Benue State University Teaching Hospital, Makurdi. Upon interrogation, Ochanya revealed how long the molestation had been taking place and how she was threatened against her life if anyone got to know of what was happening. She explained that she was forced with drugs.
She suffered several health complications and died of Vesicovaginal fistula (VVF) at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital, Makurdi – at the very tender age of 13.
The situation was reported at the Police Headquarters in Makurdi and Andrew was arrested charged to court. Andrew was ordered to be remanded pending the next adjournment in September when the son too was to be arrested and charged. On the next adjournment, Ochanya’s lawyers couldn’t make it to court and the case was further adjourned to November 4, 2018.
Andy Ogbuja is a lecturer and the Head of Department, Catering and Hotel Management at the Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo, Benue, while Victor Ogbuja is a final year student of Animal Production at the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi.