Police in Anambra on Wednesday arraigned a septuagenarian, Albert Eligbue, for allegedly forcing a widow, to drink water used to bathe a corpse.
Eligbue, 75, and a native of Atani in Ogbaru, Anambra, was arraigned in the Children, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Court in Awka.
The Prosecutor, Insp. Onyema Ayogu told the court that the defendant was accused of forcing a widow and sister-in-law, Mrs Patricia Eligbue, to drink water used to wash the corpse of her late brother-in-law as proof of her innocence over his death.
He said the incident happened at Atani in Ogbaru Local Government Area of the state.
Ayogu said the defendant was facing a five count charge including conspiracy to commit felony and assault, offence punishable under sections 495(a) and 190 of the Criminal Code Cap 36 Vol. 11 revised laws of Anambra State of Nigeria, 1991
Ayogu said the septuagenarian forcefully ejected the widow from her matrimonial home, offence under section 11(1) of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition and Protection (VAPP) Law of Anambra State of Nigeria, 2017.
He was also charged for verbal, emotional and psychological abuse, an offence punishable under section 16(1) of the VAPP Law of Anambra state of Nigeria, 2017.
Eligbue pleaded not guilty to the five count charges preferred against him.
The Magistrate, Mrs Genevieve Osakwe, however, granted bail to Eligbue with the sum of N500,000, with a surety to be the Traditional Ruler or President General of Atani community.
The case was adjourned till June 7, 2023.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Mrs Ify Obinabo, Commissioner for Women and Social Welfare, had informed the Anambra police command on the barbaric traditional practices against a widow to drink water used for bathing a corpse in the state.
Obinabo reported to the police that the ministry rescued the widow from her relatives who forced her to drink water used in washing the corpse of her husband’s nephew. (NAN)