More than five months after an 11-year-old girl was allegedly raped to death, her remains are yet to be released to her family for burial. Anurika Nathan, an 11-year-old native of Owo-Ahia Afor, Obingwa Local Government Area, Abia State, was allegedly raped to death by her guardian, and her parents are worried that her corpse had not been released for burial long after autopsy was concluded on it.
The Nation had reported the death of Anurika, the last female child of Mr. Chinenye Nathan, a civil servant in Abia State, in the house of her guardian in whose house she was working as a house help before her untimely death. The man had allegedly rushed Anurika to a private hospital in Umuahia after she went into coma, but the hospital referred her to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Umuahia for urgent attention. It was learnt, however, that the girl died before they could get to the medical centre and her body was deposited in the hospital’s morgue.
Sources in Owo-Ahia Afor said that Anurika’s family members were pained by the death of their daughter who had been sent to the ASOPADEC commissioner’s house to serve as a house help and also further her education. A family source told our correspondent that they were yet to be shown the result of the autopsy, adding: “We are sure that the man abused our daughter, because at the FMC, blood was rushing out from her private part. She also sustained injuries on her legs.
The source, who said the police were already investigating the matter, also accused the police of trying to sweep the matter under the carpet owing to the influence of the commissioner in the state. He was allegedly bragging that he had the wherewithal to influence police investigation against the poor economic status of the victim’s family.
The immediate past governor of the state, Chief Theodore Ahamefule Orji, had through the then Commissioner for Information, Anthony Agbazuere, addressed a press conference where he disclosed that the state had placed the errant official on interdiction because of the heinous nature of the allegation against him, pending the determination of his case by the police and the courts, adding that Sec
However, in response to a text message sent to his phone, the Abia State Commissioner of Police, Joshiak Habila, said that the matter had been transferred to the DPP (Director of Public Prosecution) for advice.
But the father of the late Anurika, Mr. Nathaniel, said he was at the hospital when his daughter died after bleeding for more than 30 minutes. According to the late Anurika’s father, blood was gushing out from his daughter’s genitals, mouth and nose, which he said was a proof that she was raped.
He lamented that all the efforts they had made to retrieve her body for burial had yielded no result because the hospital demanded N970, 000 as the medical fees they must pay before they would be allowed to take her corpse home for burial.
Nathaniel, who said he was no longer interested in prosecuting the case because of its financial involvement, however appealed to the Abia State governor, Dr. Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, to come to their aid by directing the management of the FMC to release his daughter’s corpse for burial or compel the man that raped her to offset the medical bill to enable him take his daughter’s corpse home, saying that he and other members of the family had handed the matter over to God.
A family source, who disclosed that the mother and other members of the late Anurika’s family were already traumatised by the development, stressed that keeping their daughter’s corpse continuously in the morgue would mean more emotional trauma for the family.
The source also appealed to Abia State Government, the management of FMC and public spirited individuals to assist the family in ensuring that the corpse of their daughter was released to them for burial.