THE FEDERAL government says legal action will be taken against a couple, Mr Ifeanyi and Mrs Christabel Ewuru, in Enugu state over alleged molestation and neglect of their eight-year old daughter and inflicting diseases on her.
Mrs Uju Ohanenye, the Minister of Women Affairs, confirmed this while addressing the media in Abuja.
According to her, the ministry will take up legal action against the couple to ensure the survivor gets justice as well as serve as deterrent to others, who might want to tow the same line.
Ohanenye expressed deep concern over incessant cases of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV), harmful traditional practices and other forms of abuses meted on women, children and the vulnerable.
“This eight-year-old girl has been molested severally by her stepfather, who has given her diseases, broken her walls, which has been confirmed in the hospital, also by the lawyer and mother of this girl.
“The matter was taken to court, but unfortunately, the magistrate released this man on bail.
“We want to know why he was released despite the allegations against him simply because the woman cried that she didn’t want her husband to be jailed.
“What about the voiceless girl? What about the torture, emotional pains the girl went through and threat not to disclose the molestation?
“We are suing the woman for negligence. Because if she was not negligent, this girl would not have suffered this thing for a long time.
“And this woman had the guts to defend the man who did this to your daughter simply because you want to keep the marriage or what I don’t know.
“We are suing the man on behalf of the young girl to make sure he pays for his sin, the rule of law must prevail, the truth must prevail. Justice must be done on behalf of this young girl,” she assured.
According to her, establishment of mobile courts will hasten up the prosecution of SGBV and other harmful practices against women and children, as well as ensure survivors get justice.
“These are things that will make this girl feel better and this will not affect her in future as it should have done if she sees for sure that actions were being taken.
“No more room for these things in this country. No more business as usual. You commit a crime, you go in for it.
“That is why we are still pleading to our President, Attorney General and the chief judges in states to quickly approve establishment of mobile courts so that it will enable us to accelerate matters concerning women affairs and quickly defend them,” said the minister.
In another development, the minister said a pre-action letter will be sent to some staff on duty and management at the Maitama General Hospital over the alleged negligence and refusal to treat Miss Greatness Olorunfemi, victim of “one chance”, before her death at the hospital.
“We were able to get the names of those on duty that day, the Medical Director and Chief Matron, Accident and Emergency.
“We will sue the staff, which will make others sit-up. We have written a pre-action letter, which they will get to tell them about our intention to take them to court. And we are giving them seven days to reply to that.
“Then we are writing to the Public Complaints Committee at the National Assembly to look into the matter and call not only these people but all the CMDs of hospitals in FCT and even across.
“They need to summon them for these issues to be addressed once and for all. Nigerians can not continue dying carelessly like that. Then we are equally writing to the Senate President on the same issue.
“Then after the seven days pre-action notice, the Ministry of Women Affairs through the Minister for Women Affairs will stand for the lady, all Nigerian women and girls to defend them on this issue of treating them anyhow,” she said.
She explained that even though they had been informed that the ministry had been added to the panel for investigation into the matter, they were yet to receive any official letter on it. (NAN)