Three under age girls, who were among those recently rescued from a
hotel in the Alaba area of Lagos, have given reasons for taking to
Agness, 12, said she was shocked when some policemen stormed the hotel,
arrested and took them to the National Agency for the Prohibition of
Trafficking in Persons and other related matters (NAPTIP) shelter at
Before Agnes got to the age of 12, she had already lost her virginity to
a man she identified as Okonkon. Her troubles started when her parents
died few years back while she was still in primary two and left her in
the care of an aunt.
She said: "I sold pure water for my auntie for three years. Later, for
no reason, she drove me out. The landlady gave her quit notice for
sending me out. It was the woman, who sometimes gave me money to buy
garri and drink. I started sleeping in the streets. It was in the street
that I met Okonkon. He would take me to his house, sleep with me and
give me money. I have never got pregnant."
As Agnes was struggling to survive, it was only a matter of time before
a new calling came. One day, a friend identified as Ugbo, called her.
She told her the story of the beauty of Lagos. She also told her about
making money in Lagos and being a maid to one madam. Agnes was hooked.
Ugbo told her it would be worthwhile if she could bring another girl to
Agnes quickly ran to call 14-year-old Peace, who was having problems
with her mother following the death of her father. Peace said: "I was
quarrelling with my mother. It was not long that my father died that she
started dating one man. She brought him to our house and he started
living with us. Ugbo said we would sell something, but she never said
anything about prostitution. I left with them and never told my mother."
They were, however, shocked when they got to Lagos and were taken to a
hotel at Ajegunle. They were also shocked to see one of their village
girls called Stella. According to them, Stellaís mother had been looking
Peace said: "When I saw the activities in the hotel, I told my madam
that I couldnít do such a job. I told her I had never done it before,
but she said I had to pay her the cost of transporting me to Lagos from
Peace tried to buy time, by charging her clients outrageous fees. Once
they leave, she would lie to her madam that the men didnít want to use
Stella, 15, a primary six drop-out, said she ran away from home to Lagos
because she had the dream of working in a big supermarket and making
She got to Lagos to discover her real job. She said she made much fuss
until the manager of the hotel, Atim, sent her away, saying she was too
young. Undaunted, the madam took her to another hotel, where she finally
settled for business.
Stella said: "I wish to return home to my mother. Atim never told me the
good job was prostitution."
The girls are already being rehabilitated by experts. Agnes and Peace
said they would give anything to go back to school.
EVIL WOMAN: Gives housegirl scar with hot knife for
By OLUWATOYIN OGUNSEYE
11-year-old girl in Lagos has told how her aunty, smeared her face and
body with hot knife for watching television.
Nkiru Egboanu, who left her village in Anambra State three years ago to
stay with her uncle and his wife, was literally turned into an animal by
her uncleís wife, Uju Basil. The young girlís predicament reached its
peak last week when her guardian allegedly placed a knife in a burning
stove and defaced her body with the red hot knife.
Nemesis caught up with Uju, when she sent the victim to drop her kids in
school. Passers -by who saw the little girlís battered face stopped to
ask her what happened. Among them was a human rights activist, Israel
Mabaebie, who followed her home.
Barrister Israel, was shocked when he saw the open wounds all over
Nkiruís body. " I knew that the girl had been tortured," he said. "She
had not been taken to the hospital and the sores were attracting flies.
She looked traumatized and psychologically down. I asked her what
happened and she told me that it was her aunty that defaced her. I did
not believe that a human being could do that to another person. I
decided to follow her home. By then, a group of people had gathered and
followed me to her house."
If Israel thought that he had seen the worst, he was dumbfounded when
Uju confirmed that she actually injured her niece. He said: "She showed
She confirmed that she used hot knife on the girl because she was
watching television and forgot to wash the bathroom. I decided to take
the case up and reported at the State Criminal Investigations Department
(SCID), Panti, Yaba. You wonít believe that somebody wanted to bribe me
with money. He claimed that he did not know that the injury on the poor
girlís face was that bad. I told him to go to hell with his money
because I donít joke with my conscience. They were not even bothered
when I told them that I was going to the police."
When Daily Sun paid a visit to Ujuís home, she confirmed that she
smeared the girlís body. She said: "That girl is too playful. I have
told her several times not to watch television. She has spoilt the
television before and I repaired it. I gave her some chores to do but
she was sitting before the TV not doing what I asked her to do. I got
angry and asked her to follow me to the kitchen. I took a knife and put
it on one of the burning stoves in my kitchen. I put it on one of her
"Instead of her to cry, she was looking at me. I felt that she was
daring me. So, I put the knife back in the fire and put it on the other
cheek. She was still looking at me. I put it all over her body and sent
her back to do her chores."
When detectives led by Inspector Akeem Ishola arrived at Ujuís Orile
home to arrest her, they met a crowd outside the home asking for the
womanís head. A neighbour who pleaded anonymity, said: "A few weeks ago,
I would have sent Nkiru back to her parents if I knew where they live in
the East, if I had the money. That day, she beat the girl to the extent
that blood was coming out of her eyes. The girl could not see for days.
She was groping in darkness. When I asked her what happened, she told me
that her aunty beat her because she did not wash plates. I had to give
the girl some food. I could not do more than that because I donít want
the womanís trouble."
Nkiru, confided in Daily Sun that she did not want to return to her
auntyís place. She said: "I donít want to go back. She is always beating
me. I want to go back to my mother in the village. She sent all my elder
brothers that were staying with us away. She does not give me food and I
work from morning till night. I donít go to school again because she has
withdrawn me. Please, donít let me go."
Barrister Israel further revealed that Ujuís family had been sending
emissaries to him to beg, but he was not relenting in ensuring that
justice was done.