The Police command in Anambra state has paraded an 80-year-old woman, Felicia Nwafor and her 39-year-old daughter self acclaimed pastor, Rejoice over alleged child trafficking and assault.
The suspects who are from Umunya in Oyi Local Government Area were accused of confining three children , 2 boys and a girl, inside different rooms at Onitsha, as well as subjecting them to physical and emotional torture without food.
Parading the suspects at the police headquarters, Amawbia, the Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Haruna Muhammed, said the matter would be charged to court after proper investigations.
The 80-year-old mother and her daughter who claimed she was a businesswoman and pastor, were arrested on February 19, 2021, by police operatives attached to 3-3 Police Station, Nkwelle Ezunaka, in conjunction with the local vigilante group, following a tip-off.
The Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Muhammed said the suspects allegedly confined three children, 2 boys and a girl inside different rooms at NO.13 Akunwanta Mbamalu Street, Federal Housing Estate, Onitsha, and subjected them to physical and emotional torture.
The PPRO further stated that the children apart from being denied food, equally had several wounds inflicted on them, a treatment that left them unconscious and at the point of death.
According to him, the victims, who were badly battered with lacerations all over their bodies , were found in the pool of their blood before they were rescued and rushed to the hospital for medical attention.
He stated that “Exhibits recovered at the scene included some fetish substances, blood stained canes, concoctions and other incriminating items including mortar and pestle.
Preliminary investigations, according to the PPRO, revealed that the three children were allegedly sold to the suspects by a notorious child trafficking kingpin, who worked under the ministry of Womens’ Affairs and Social Development in Awka South Local Government Area, Sabina Izoura.
In an interview, the suspect arrested for dehumanizing three children at Onitsha, Rejoice, claimed that she formerly adopted the the children from the state ministry of Women’s Affairs at the cost of Three Million, Fifty thousand naira.
She however denied every other allegation against her.
Also, Twenty five year old Nneoma Okafor, from Nkpor who is a mother of three children, was paraded for allegedly maltreatment and torture of her ten year old house help who died on the sixteenth of February this year.
Okafor who denied the allegations claimed that the girl was handed over to her with the wounds on her body three months before she died.
The Commissioner for Social Welfare, Women and Children Affairs, Mrs Ndidi Mezue, said the ministry would continue to provide succor to the dehumanized children and called for quick prosecution of the suspects.