By Nehru Odeh
It sounds bizarre but true. An 11 year old girl, Favour Okechukwu, was recently gang-raped in Lagos. The bloodcurdling incident happened at Olarewaju street in Ejigbo area of the state.
According to reports, the victim, on returning from school was sent to buy a carton of gala, a popular snack from a nearby shop when four men lured her to a room and raped her to death.
The suspects, realizing that the girl was dead, abandoned her and fled. The victim’s father, Dickson Okechukwu on returning from work discovered her naked body in the room after a frantic search for her.
“I was shocked when my wife said Favour hadn’t returned from where she was to collect a carton of the gala(snack) because it was unusual of her to stay long outside. I went to three of her classmates’ houses to look for her, but they all said they didn’t see her. I was walking like a mad man, asking everyone I saw about her whereabouts and it was getting dark.
“I saw a man who lives on the same street with me and told him I was looking for my daughter. He informed that he had to close early because a little girl was raped to death in a building close to his shop.
“I decided to go and check since I was looking for my daughter and he accompanied me to the building. Behold, when I got there, it was my daughter, Favour! She lay motionless. I shouted, shook her vigorously as I called out her name, begging her to wake up. But she didn’t respond. I was too shocked to believe she was gone just like that. A child I left hale and hearty while leaving the house in the morning, was gone when I returned”, he said in tears.
When the Ejigbo Police division was informed about the murder, it mobilized officers who went to the scene and discovered the girl’s copse. Palpably shocked and afraid of being arrested by the police, residents in the area fled.
Though the suspects are still at large, Tabi, the owner of the room in which Favour was gang-raped, has been arrested and is helping the police with investigations.
Some tenants have also been summoned by the police for questioning, while the victim’s copse has been deposited in the mortuary.
Intriguing? Certainly. But the most worrisome thing about the murder is that the area is a slum notorious for criminal activities and atrocities.
Apart from young girls, married women in the area had been raped in the past, according to reports. Criminals had not only robbed married women but also raped them.
Meanwhile the police have intensified efforts to arrests the suspects who are still at large