The National Agency for Trafficking in Persons and other related offences is investigating a defilement case involving an official of the Federal Road Safety Corps in Makurdi, Benue State, Charles Ali.
Ali was accused of having sex with a nine-year-old primary three pupil.
The victim, whose father is Ali’s neighbour at Kanshio, in the Makurdi area of the state, alleged that Ali slept with her on five different occasions.
Although the report of a medical test carried out on the girl at the Federal Medical Centre, Makurdi, reportedly revealed that she had been deflowered, the FRSC official denied defiling the girl.
Ali had been allegedly defiling the girl since 2017, until on February 26 when he was allegedly caught sleeping with her inside his car parked some distance away from their residence.
PUNCH Metro learnt that the act was exposed by a hawker identified as Chinasa, who reportedly saw Ali having sex with the girl.
It was learnt that Ali initially pleaded for forgiveness from the victim’s father when the news of the defilement filtered into the neighbourhood, but retracted his entreaties after the matter was reported to NAPTIP.
The victim told our correspondent on the telephone on Thursday that Ali had slept with her in his apartment thrice.
She said the February 26 incident was the fifth time Ali would sleep with her.
She said, “As I was fetching water that day, he (Ali) called me and took me to where his car was. He collected my bucket and put it in front of his car. He took me inside his car and told me to lie down on the back seat. He was naked. He put the thing he uses to urinate in my body (private parts). He gave me N50. Chinasa was beside the car and she saw us. She said she would tell my father. Mr. Ali begged her.
“He first slept with me in his (living) room last year in the afternoon. His wife and children were not at home. Three children and I were playing in his room. He told them to leave and closed the door.
“He covered my mouth and slept with me. He gave me biscuits when he finished. Small blood came out from my body, but I cleaned it. I wanted to tell my sister; she said she did not want to hear anything. She told me not to tell our daddy. Our mother is dead. He slept with me three times in his room. He did the fourth one in his car. This was the fifth time.”
The girl’s father, who gave his name simply as Michael, said investigation into the case was at snail pace, adding that Ali had been bragging in the neighbourhood since NAPTIP released him on bail.
He said, “While I was going to have a bath, a neighbour said Chinasa told her that she caught Ali sleeping with my daughter in his car. A resident, Moses Terngusekav, also said he saw Ali begging Chinasa not to expose him. Chinasa is about 14 years old.
“When I confronted Ali, he started crying and apologising. The following day around 5am, he came with his wife to beg me. Somebody directed me to NAPTIP, where I reported the case. He was arrested and later released on bail.
“I suspect there is an attempt to sweep the matter under the carpet. I took my daughter to the Federal Medical Centre, Makurdi, for a test and the report stated that her hymen was gone. I gave the original copy of the medical report to NAPTIP. Chinasa’s mother does not want to present her to NAPTIP as a witness.”
Michael wondered why NAPTIP had not charged the case to court despite having the report of the medical test and statements made by her daughter and the resident, Terngusekav.
The medical report, dated March 5, 2018, and signed by a consultant, Dr. N.A. Akwaras, said there was “bruising and inflammation” on the girl’s private parts.
The report read in part, “…on vaginal examination, the vulva was swollen and tender, no hymen was seen and there was bruising and inflammation at the introitus. No bleeding or laceration observed…urinalysis was suggestive of urinary tract infection and urine microscopy culture and sensitivity result showed candida albicans isolate. A diagnosis of rape was made.”
Terngusekav, an 18-year-old Senior Secondary School three pupil, told PUNCH Metro 99+that he had visited a friend and was returning home around 7pm that day when he saw Chinasa threatening to expose Ali for the alleged offence.
He said, “I was walking home along where Mr. Ali’s car was parked when I saw the groundnuts seller (Chinasa). She told me that Ali slept with the girl. He did not want the groundnuts seller to tell me what happened, but she insisted. He begged her in my presence.
“I confronted the victim, but she initially denied the act. When I threatened to call her father, she opened up and said Ali slept with her. She said that was the fifth time.”
Ali, in a chat with our correspondent, refuted the allegations and demanded that report on the case be suspended until the outcome of the NAPTIP investigation.
He said, “Some of my friends and I were watching a football match between Manchester United and Chelsea in a bar that day. My car was parked three metres away from the highway. Around 4pm, I saw a girl close to my vehicle. When I got there, I found out that it was the man’s (Michael’s) daughter.
“She has a record of scratching my vehicle. That was the third time and I had reported her to the father before. She actually wrote on the vehicle that day. I held her hand and scolded her. She left and I returned to the bar.
“Around 6.30pm, my wife called me that there was an issue at home. As I was approaching home, some people started harassing me. The man said I raped his daughter. It is an open place; how could I have raped her there? Am I insane?
“The following day when I was going to work, the father met with me for a discussion. I didn’t beg him. The case is before NAPTIP for investigation. If I had raped the girl, there should be serious damage (to her private parts), but nothing like that happened. ”
Ali stated that Michael wanted to malign him, adding that he was not aware of the medical report.
When PUNCH Metro called the online contact of NAPTIP, a man who claimed to be speaking from the agency’s zonal command in Makurdi, confirmed that the case was reported.
The man, who did not give his name, said, “We have started investigating the matter. We are taking the matter seriously. The matter will be charged to court after investigation.”