The remains of Ochanya Ogbanje, a 13 year old girl who was raped to death by her aunt’s husband, Andrew Ogbuja, and his son Victor, were yesterday, laid to rest amidst tears, in her home town, Ogene Amejo Okpokwu local government area of Benue State.
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Speaking after the burial, a group under the aegis of Concerned Citizens For Ochanya, commended the thorough, transparent and unbiased investigation into the matter by the police and other related agencies, as well as the publishing of the actual facts.
The group, however, called for speedy, diligent and fair prosecution of the case to ensure that justice was served to all parties involved.
The group also requested that, the suspect, Andrew Ogbuja, should immediately be suspended from carrying out his official duties as a lecturer and head of department in the Benue State Polytechnic, pending the outcome of the investigation into his complicity in the case.
They also requested that the wife of the suspect, Mrs Felicia Ogbuja, be invited for questioning over her role, either by commission or omission, in the matter.
While appealing to the Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom, to immortalise the late Elizabeth Ochanya Ogbanje as a martyr of child rape, sexual molestation and abuse to discourage future act of abuse, neglect and exploitation of children, the group also called on the government to also compensate her family members to mitigate the trauma of the painful loss.
“The Benue State House of Assembly should also intensify efforts to pass the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act (2015). We also call for a thorough review of the Judicial System to protect the rights of children against rape and sexual molestation.”