Ese: Reps To Hear Petition On Victim’s Compensation, Family

The House of Representatives has admitted a petition seeking the payment of compensation for the 14-year-old Ese Oruru and her family over her abduction, conversion to another religion and forced marriage.


Ese was freed and re-united with her family last week after having been kidnapped from Bayelsa State in 2015 and held captive in Kano State for six months.


The abductor, one Yunusa, a.k.a. ‘Yellow’, is already in police custody.

Meanwhile, following the successful release of Ese Oruru, a human rights activist, Dr. Tunji Abayomi, has urged the Federal Government to effectively apply laws for the protection of children from exploiters hiding under religion.


The teenage girl, forced into converting to Islam and marriage to Yinusa, was released and reunited with her family last week after a massive media campaign.


According to a report by Punch, findings on Monday showed that the House Committee on Public Petitions would begin hearing on the petition “just days away.”


A National Assembly official also said that the Speaker of the House, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, had referred the petition to the committee last week Thursday.


The petition was written by the Bayelsa State chapter of the Civil Liberties Organisation in conjunction with the mother of the minor.


It was signed by the Chairman of the rights group, Chief Nengi James; the Legal Secretary, Mr. J.J. Mkbere; and Ese’s mother, Mrs. Rose Oruru.

It was gathered that a lawmaker from Bayelsa State, Mr. Duoye Diri, conveyed the petition to the speaker.


In addition, the petitioners called for a thorough investigation of Ese’s travails and the prosecution of the culprits to serve as a deterrent to to persons who might be planning such “criminal acts” in the future.


Part of the petition read, “In a country of plurality of ethnicities founded on secular tenets, the acts of certain adherents, no doubt, bespeak of reckless and crass invasion of other adherents’ rights to same, which in the instant saga, Ese Oruru’s own rights to movement, dignity of her human person, religion, education, family and private life, were subject of violations.

“Each of these entitles Ese and indeed, the Oruru family, to exemplary damages and the like on the one hand, while the investigation and prosecution of the culprits/masterminds of this obnoxious act will accord perfectly with the deterrent goal of the criminal justice system. “

The petitioners also demanded that a legal framework with stiffer penalties should be put in place by the Federal Government to penalise offenders.

“We trust that your handling of this subject matter will not betray people’s confidence in your (Reps’) legislative functions vis-a-vis the rights of Ese”, the document added.

Abayomi, also a lawyer, told our correspondent in an telephone interview that the restoration of Oruru’s mental health after eight months in captivity should be the priority of government and that Yinusa should be charged with kidnapping and sexual violation.

According to him, the act carried out by Yinusa should not be encouraged as the abduction violates the law, ethics and principles of human rights.


He added that the abductor should be punished according to his offence under the law.


“I think what the government needs to do is to have a standard, and apply the law effectively in order to protect children.

“Looking at some of the reports and the number of children essentially relating their experiences, it is clear that in many cases, these children have no choice and are forced into a condition they don’t want.”


Credit : Punch

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