SOS: Domestic Violence On The Rise
Recent statistics shows that one in four women in Nigeria is experiencing one form of abuse from her partner. Globally, the figure is one in three women. For instance,Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency says 2,334 cases of domestic violence and four deaths were recorded in the state in the last six months. In a voluntary survey carried out, 64% of 45 women interviewed in the work place said they had been beaten by a partner (boyfriend or husband), while another 56% of 48 interviewed market women admitted experiencing such violence.
According to the Nigerian 1999 Constitution, Section 3(1) which provides that a person who willfully causes or inflict physical injury on another person by means of any weapon, substance or object, commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a minimum of two years imprisonment or a fine not less than N200,000( Two Hundred thousand Naira) or both.
Domestic violence transcends natural frontiers and has been condemned in legal instruments produced at both local and international institutions in which Nigeria has participated. The root causes are varied and include inter alia the socio-economic position of the genders.Domestic violence is a major public health problem that affects millions of people and often results in Physical and emotional injuries and deaths.
Last week, Anambra witnessed the most absurd deaths arising from domestic violence after a man named lkechukwu Obiora strangled his pregnant wife to death. The couple were barely six months married. The event sent cold chills into the veins of every Ezi- Ogwugwu of Otolo Nnewi indigenes. When apprehended and interrogated. The suspect blamed his actions on domestic violence. According to him, his wife had delayed to open the gate to the house while he aggressively banged the doors. He explained that his wife told him she was bathing but he didn't care to listen and started beating and dragging her by her hair. In the scuffle that ensued, he strangled her to death and realizing his mistake, he ran.
" I returned home on the day March 2nd, 2023 and was knocking on the gate but my pregnant wife didn't open the gate immediately.
" In that anger, I started shouting at her. I slapped her and hit her from the gate before angrily grabbing her on the neck"
That was the story from a highly deficit emotional controlled man who cut the breath of his wife, Ebere Obiora.
Barely two days later, another case erupted in Awka. In God We Trust lodge located at Nodu,Okpuno, a man beat his pregnant wife to death. When our reporter visited the scene of the crime, the residents were mum over the incident. One neighbor, Beatrice ( surname withheld) decried the callousness. She said that the suspect was always beating his wife. Despite several interventions, she would run back to the breaking bottles husband in quote.
The deceased victim is around her late 20s and had two kids for the man while pregnant for the 3rd baby. Both the baby which is almost set for delivery died alongside the mother. When further enquiries were made, it was discovered that the suspect was on the run after committing the homicide.
Still speaking, Beatrice said the sisters to the man came to pack his belongings and two kids to the village while the body of the victim was deposited in the morgue.
Question on the minds of concerned citizens is, what manner of anger would cause a man to beat another to death over a mere misunderstanding?
Recall that last year, numerous records of DV in Anambra and South East sent hearts chilling.
Firstly, a man identified as Ndubuisi Uwadiegwu from Enugu State has allegedly beat his wife, Ogochukwu Enene, to death over a loaf of bread.
The eldest child,a boy of 14 said his father would have liked him too had it not been for his fastest toes which took to flight.
It was gathered that the deceased, a former head girl of Amaenyi Girls Secondary School hailed from Umuokpu village, Awka, Anambra State, but married to her husband who hails from Enugu State.
Another case that happened in Ezimezi, Amawbia, Awka South witnessed a 49-year-old man, lkechukwu Atansi allegedly kill his wife, Uchechi for ritual purposes.
It was gathered that after killing his victim, Ikechukwu locked himself up in a room with her corpse for three days.
A resident reports say, “The man stayed inside the room with the corpse for three days until her body started decomposing and an offensive odour started oozing out from the room. That was when neighbours knew what had happened.”
The source said he suspected that the suspect was into money ritual.
“I suspect that he killed his wife for money rituals. My thinking is that he stayed with the corpse waiting for it to start yielding money, but he was disappointed,” the source stated.
If the cries of victims of DV were to be shrugged at or not given the maximum attention but the death of gospel singer Osinachi Nwachukwu awake the shackles holding the women down. Osinachi death shook the local and international community. The Ministry for Women Affairs had to step up to work to curb incessant attacks and deaths especially on the female folks.
While the husband said his wife denied of a throat cancer but her family denied it.
Amarachi Eze, her twin sister said the 42year old gospel singer who was alleged to have died of domestic assault.
Osinachi passed away on April 8, over series of regular domestic violence from her husband,Peter Nwachukwu.
After the Federal Government had filed a 23-count charge against Peter.
Testifying before the court as the third prosecution witness, Amarachi insisted that her sister did not die of ulcer or cancer as claimed by Peter Nwachukwu. She insisted that the accused killed her. Meanwhile, the suspect is still pleading not guilty as at the time of this report?
Rhetoric question remains, what really prompts a man's action against his wife to the extent of killing her and discomforting the children?
When the case of Mba MBA of Nnewi North came up, the citizens were sure angered and tired that a man of his calibre will commit such heinous crime.
Just weeks before, pictures of a happily elated dancing queen dressed in white robes trend the internet. It will be discovered that the elegant dancing maiden would be Mrs Chidiebere lloka, wife to Mr Mbazulike lloka. She was showing her excitement over the appointment of her husband(the suspect) by Gov Soludo as Nnewi North LG chairman.
Then barely three weeks into that, she was pronounced dead by medics. Forensic studies showed scratches on her neck region, brusies on her palms and blood stains which suggest a struggle, her head been hit severely that led to unconsciousness and painful death. When apprehended, Mba Mba denied touching his wife and claimed that his wife slipped and fell while bringing him dinner and hit her head on the concrete tiles. What a well prepared tale? Questions began to arise from legal instruments and other rights advocate bodies like the HURIWA which called the attention of the IGP who ordered for his arrest and relinquish his appointment.
*That day would not be the first time Lady lloka will serve her husband food? There is no one that understands her house better than a woman? Mrs Mba Mba couldn't have slipped and fell and died immediately. The application of CPR is helpful? Why the bruises on neck and palms?*
These and some many questions have lingered in the mind of human rights advocates to suggest that the LG chairman is capable of a possible homicide.
It is not only the females that are victims of DV. The male folks have their ugly tales to share too.
For example, the Anambra state Commissioner for Women Affairs and Children Welfare, Mrs Ify Obinabo who has selflessly ensured the safety of couples as well as their children.
Obinabo had reiterated that spouse find peaceful means to reconcile their differences.
During the celebration of the lnternational Women's Day, the Editor- in- Chief, Mr Jude Atupulazi opined that 70 out of 100 women are eager to leave their marriage due to domestic abuse. According to him, some husbands are not meeting up to their masculine duties,while some indulge in transferred aggression on their partners. He advised that single ladies should examine their partner's ability to control their emotions in any situation.
*Experts are of the opinion that DV could be reduced if the necessary instruments are placed. A quick study of emotional intelligence, financial capability, spiritual and psychologically balanced. If these checks are considered, a lot of marriages will be enjoyable and last longer*