Rights defender demands immediate investigation, prosecution
By Egufe Yafugborhi
HUMAN rights defender, Prince Wiro, on Wednesday charged the Police Command in Rivers State to investigate and prosecute its personnel accused of raping a woman for breach of COVID-19 protocol.
The victim, a 32-year-old widow, said a policeman attached to the Sakpenwa Police Division, Tai Local Government Area, allegedly abducted her Tuesday to a guest house where he raped her at gunpoint after arresting her for not wearing a nose mask.
She narrated: “I was returning from Bori to Port Harcourt when I met some police officers at a checkpoint. They arrested me for not wearing a nose mask. They kept me long there with them.
“Thereafter they carried me from one place to the other, claiming they want to take me to the police station, but never took me to any police station.
“After some time, they took me to a guest house where one of them raped me till dawn. His name is Inspector Peter Iba of Sakpenwa Police Station.”
Prince Wiro, in response to the allegations, demanded the Police Command in the state to, “Open immediate investigation into the alleged rape of this woman by a serving officer.
“There is no justification for the punishment of rape to be meted out to a woman because she flouted Rivers State Government order on the use of nose masks. I expect the police to take this matter seriously.
“You know there’s a recent order from the Inspector General of Police charging every Command to do everything possible to make rape a thing of the past in the society.”
The victim had on the spur-of-the-moment on Tuesday raised alarm in a text message posted on a WhatsApp media platform where she lamented, “I have been taken to a guess house just because of N100 face mask.
“I can’t believe this is happening to me. He wants to sleep with me. I am dying. He wouldn’t let me pick any call. He threatened to seize my phone.”
The Police Command in the state reacting to the allegation through the Police Public Relations Officer, Rivers Command, Nnamdi Omoni, said: “After hearing about this, we immediately invited the lady. After hearing from her, she made a written statement and Investigation has commenced.”