The police in Anambra State, southeast Nigeria, have launched a manhunt for a fleeing lawyer, one Mrs Adachukwu Chukelu Okafor, who allegedly molested an 11-year-old girl identified as Happiness Nwafor.
SaharaReporters reported on February 7, that tens of women under the aegis of Umuada Awgu Progressive Association and Umuada Awgu Global, protested against the assault and brutalisation of 11-year-old Miss Nwafor.
Happiness was allegedly brutalised with a hot knife and electric iron by her guardian, Mrs Okafor.
Mrs Okafor was accused of brutalising Happiness – a native of the Awgu council area of Enugu State – and using the hot knife and electric iron on different parts of the girl’s body, including her private parts.
Mrs Okafor, who hails from Umoji in Anambra State, but resides in the commercial city of Onitsha, was accused of brutalising Happiness because the help did not bathe her eight-year-old daughter well.
Mrs Okafor is said to be in hiding, but the Anambra State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Ikenga Tochukwu, confirmed that the command had received the report of the incident.
In an interview with SaharaReporters on the incident, Ikenga said, “We are aware of this development and the alleged woman is on the run. Meanwhile, the police command is in partnership with the state government on the investigation and especially regarding the welfare of the rescued child.”
Meanwhile, the state governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, has vowed that his administration will prosecute the female lawyer.
Mr Soludo, in a post on his Facebook page, said abuse or violation of vulnerable persons and minors will not be tolerated in the state.
“Mrs Adachukwu Cukelu-Okafor who visibly violated the young girl left in her custody is one out of many who do not deserve a place amongst decent humanity.
“We have commenced actions to ensure she (Cukelu-Okafor) is brought to justice,” he said.
The governor said the suspect’s prosecution will serve as a “firm warning to all abusers of any kind” in the state.
He said the Child Rights Act (2003) and Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (2017) have long been domesticated in the state in addition to other laws against abuse and violence.
“My administration is big on entrenching law and order as a foundation for building the liveable and prosperous homeland that we all seek,” he stated.