12 year old tells chilling story of how she was fingered and sexually harassed

3
children's day

For more than one month, Jennifer, a
12-year-old girl, whose parents shared the same compound with a dry
cleaner and his wife in Shasha area of Akowonjo, Lagos, allegedly
endured consistent sexual harassment in the hands of the man she called
Uncle Paul.

Paul Onobluduakpo, 40, is a Delta State
indigene, who allegedly insisted on sleeping with the girl, until the
harassment became unbearable for her.
“Sometimes, he would hit me in the
bottom, and I would slap his hand away. He would call me ‘my wife, my
wife’ and I told him I would tell his wife. He always did that when my
mother or his wife was not around,” Jennifer told Saturday PUNCH.

According to her, after many previous
actions like smacking her bottom and pinching her body parts, Paul took
his harassment further one day when she was dressing up in the room.
“I did not know he was at the door and
watching me as I was dressing up for church. He opened the net on the
door. His wife was around. So that she would think he was just playing
with me, he called out to his wife and told her ‘Come and see this small
girl wearing bra o’. I was angry.
“Then, his wife came to meet me and
advised that I should stop wearing bra at a young age. His wife did not
know what was going on. I drew the curtain to dress up again and I saw
him still peeping. I then shouted ‘Leave that place’ so that his wife
would hear.
“Few days after that, I was having my
bath in one of the two bathrooms we share in the compound. I noticed him
passing frequently, he was trying to pull the curtain on the bathroom
when I shouted at him to leave the place. He left without saying
anything.”
The latest events happened after
Jennifer, a year one secondary school pupil, started holiday and was at
home with her 10-year-old sister.
According to Jennifer, her mother was away at work while her father works outside Lagos.
She said, “That day, I was in the room
when he just came in and started saying, ‘Do you know I love you? He was
trying to hold me and I told him I would shout. I told him to go and
love his wife and children.
“He said, ‘You are my wife too’ and I
said ‘God forbid.’ He suddenly grabbed me and put his finger inside my
pant and I ran out of the room. When he heard my sister’s footstep, he
walked away to his room.
“I reported all these incidents to my
mother and she said anytime he attempted to touch me again, I should
shout and run outside and tell anybody around the house what he did so
that I would have a witness.”
Jennifer’s mother said he wanted him to
be caught red-handed so, she did not confront him when her daughter
reported the consistent harassment she had been suffering in the hands
of their neighbour.
As expected, few days after that,
Jennifer said she was playing with her siblings in the compound when
Onobluduakpo again smacked her bottom.
The girl went straight to report to one of their neighbours and went inside.
“As I was entering our apartment, he
followed me and I slammed the door again against him before he could
enter. He was angry,” she said.
Jennifer’s mother told our correspondent
that she reported the case to the Esther Child Rights Foundation
immediately she heard of Paul’s latest action.
“My daughter said that once in a while,
Onobluduakpo gave her N100 just so she would not reject him when he
intended to perpetrate his evil intention. I restrained myself from
confronting him because I did not want him to run away. The most
annoying part was that my daughter said the man also once touched the
breast of her 10-year-old sister.
Onobluduakpo was eventually arrested and detained at the Shasha Police Division, Lagos on Tuesday.
Saturday PUNCH reached out to
the Shasha Police Division where officials of the children’s unit
explained that the man had now been charged to court.
Officials at the station said he was
arraigned on Thursday at an Ogba Magistrate’s Court on charges of
attempted defilement and sexual abuse.
Onobluduakpo pleaded not guilty as the
charge was read to him. He was later granted bail in the sum of N300,000
with two sureties in like sum.
Executive Director of Esther Child
Rights Foundation, Mrs. Esther Ogwu, appreciated the police for taking
the decision to prosecute Onobluduakpo immediately.
She, however, urged the police to
sustain the prosecution by seeing it to the end in order to serve as a
deterrent to other men who may seek to molest young girls.

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