Lagos, Ogun Top Police Rape Chart
Crime statistics recently compiled by the authority of the Lagos State Police Command shows that criminality rate in the state has soared to an alarming crescendo to the bewilderment of the authority and concerned members of the public.
For instance, it was gathered from the compiled data that rape incident has taken the lead as against the usual and common crimes, like armed robbery and theft.
From January 2014 to August, the Lagos State Police command recorded 798 reported cases of rape and defilement. The command also has in its kitty, 83 suspected rapists.
This figure is higher than that of last year in which the command said it recorded 678 cases of rape in the state. The statistics by the police showed that the number of rape cases was reported between January 2013 and August 2013.
Following Lagos command closely in this regard is the neighboring Ogun State, with 307 reported cases of rape and defilement. According to statistics obtained at the zone two Police command, Onikan, Lagos, Ogun State has out-run Lagos command in the rate of murder cases.
It was also gathered that break-and-entry (burglary) was the second highest crime committed in Lagos. The data supplied by the Police showed that during the period under review, the command recorded 23 reported cases of Burglary, while some nine suspects have been arrested.
It was also gathered that most of the victims of the rape incidences were shying away from pursuing the cases, either at the Police station or court, for fear of stigmatization.
Police source said, the development was already crippling their effort at reducing the crime in the society. “If people that were raped, refused to follow-up with the case or pursue it at court, what would you do?” he asked.
It would be recalled that in 2012 alone, between January and August, Lagos State Police Command, in its statistics revealed that the command recorded 678 cases of rape in the state. The statistics by the police shows that the number of rape cases was reported between January 2012 and August 2013.
The statistics actually came against the backdrop that rape of minors has been on the increase in Nigeria despite the various laws on rape. This ugly trend reported in the media and social media however does not depict the true statistics on rape as most rape victims do not have their cases reported to the police and therefore the rapists go free.
It would be recalled that in 2013, a 47-year-old-man was arrested in Lagos State in March for serially raping his seven-year-old daughter and his one month old granddaughter. The suspect identified as Sylvester Ehijere, was exposed by his wife who noticed blood stains on the toddler’s thigh. The seven-year-old girl told the police that her father had raped her serially but the suspect blamed the devil for the crime.
He has since been charged to court. Also, a 13-year-old girl narrated how she was gang-raped by three men in Lagos State. The victim, a Junior High School student, dropped out of school because she got pregnant as a result of the rape.
The girl (name Withheld) said she was lured into a neighbour’s apartment at number 19, Majaro Street, Mafoluku area of Lagos State, Nigeria in August 2012.
According to her, one Emenuwa Achonam, a married man with five children, invited her into his room under the guise of assisting him with some chores only for him to pounce on her and sexually assault her.
She said: “Brother Achonam (Emenuwa Achonam) called me to buy drinks for his visitors. But when I got inside to collect the money, he asked me to pull my clothes and they started dipping their hands inside me then they slept with me, it was brother Achonam that first slept with me then his two friends had their way. When Emenuwa was done having his way with me, he also gave the go ahead to his two friends who were in his apartment to also rape me. After they had their way, they made fun of me and ordered me to leave the room, threatening that they would kill me.”
The traumatized girl bore the burden for months until she became ill and the doctor confirmed she was pregnant. Following the girl’s confession, the suspects were arrested. The police gave their names as Godwin Udoh, 22; and Emenike Orji, 20. The case has since been charged to the Ikeja family court in Lagos.
An 85-year-old man, identified as Baba Yellow, an alleged notorious rapist in Shomolu community in Lagos State, was almost lynched over allegation he raped a 14-year-old girl.
The residents alleged that Baba Yellow was caught defiling young girls but the parents of the girls would rather let him off the hook due to his old age.
Narrating how she was raped, the girl said: “I met Baba Yellow at Sunday market at Shomolu. My guardian sent me to the market to get foodstuffs. Baba Yellow came walked up to me and I greeted him. He then gave me some money and asked me to come to his house. When I didn’t show up, he later came to our premises to look for me. That was how we went to his room and he raped me.”
Similarly, the Child Protection Network, a Non-Governmental Organization, informed our Correspondent that the rape of a minor by a 62-year-old man, Alabi Ibrahim, has remained the most memorable, yet condemnable in the history of rape in Nigeria. The 10-year-old victim said her stepfather had slept with her many times. She said: “Daddy always sleeps with me when mummy is not around and always tells me not to tell anybody, else I would die. I have lost count of the number of times stepfather slept with me.”
With the drive and all the energy put in by NGOs, Lagos State Police command and the Lagos State judiciary to discourage rapists in the state, the situation appear undaunted and precarious.
For instance, the state had recommended a higher jail term for rapists, The Commissioner of Police, Kayode Aderanti, said, it would be a matter of time before the residents of the State would come to the reality and the need to avoid rape and being a victim.”
Perhaps, it is therefore realistic to say that the society on its part has some work to do in educating their wards against becoming a rape victim or suspect. This is because either way, one person must carry the burden. In Nigeria, unlike in the advanced western nations, rape victims, their parents and guardians shy away from enforcing their rights because of what society will say. This fear of stigmatization has given a free reign to rapists. The lack of discretion among the law enforcers in the manner they handle rape cases make some guardians to stay away from reporting rape cases. Policemen have been known to shout at police stations to the hearing of others at the station that a particular girl was raped. Religion also counts against the prosecution of rape cases. Both the accused and victims of rape cases have been known to invoke the love of God and the need to forgive in matters of rape, thus making the rape suspect go free while blaming the act on Satan.