The Nigeria Association of Women Journalists has called for the punishment of the Kogi State Commissioner for Water Resources, Abdumumuni Danga, accused of allegedly battering and raping a Beauty Queen, Elizabeth Oyeniyi, last week.
NAWOJ, in a statement signed by its Chairperson and National Secretary, Ifeyinwa Omowole and Ladi Bala, said this was the only way to serve justice in the case.
The statement said: “The Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) notes with displeasure the recent report of an alleged act of rape committed by the Kogi Commissioner for Water Resources, Abdumumuni Danga.
“Danga allegedly battered and raped a Beauty Queen, Elizabeth Oyeniyi, last week.
In videos which had gone viral, the victim narrated how she was abducted, battered, intimidated into making a video where she spoke nicely of the commissioner and eventually raped by the said commissioner.
“While the media is awash with false information that the commissioner had been suspended, NAWOJ reliably learnt that the commissioner was yet to be suspended and no punishment had been meted out to him.
“Although a probe has been initiated by the state governor, Yahaya Bello, NAWOJ wishes to urge the panel and the governor to fastrack the probe and not unduly delay it.
“It is worthy of note that many days after this allegation, the said commissioner is yet to deny the allegation against him, pointing to the fact that he may be guilty as alleged.
“NAWOJ also notes that although the victim has already indicated interest to seek legal redress, the onus still lies on the state government, if it is not complicit, to take a decisive action against the erring commissioner.
“Governor Yahaya Bello must take a clear stance to be against violence and assault on women by taking a decisive action against the commissioner, an action that would serve as a detriment to others with similar traits.
“NAWOJ wishes to call on Governor Bello to ensure that the commissioner is reined in during the period of the probe, so that he does not intimidate the victim or her family.
“No harm must come to Elizabeth Oyeniyi or any member of her family or friends as any such harm at this time will be considered a deliberate attempt to intimidate her to surrender.
“On our part, we will be liaising with other women groups and lawyers to ensure that Ms. Oyeniyi gets justice and we will publicise this case every step of the way to ensure that justice is served.
“We can no longer have people in authority who should be custodians of the law breaking same laws with impunity and yet attempting to hold onto supposedly Honorable positions.”