The Abia State Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in collaboration with Vicar Hope Foundation and the Child Protection Network; a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) of the State’s First Lady, Deaconess Nkechi Ikpeazu have reportedly rescued a teenage girl who was chained by her mother.
The rescue operation was reportedly carried out on Sunday at Umuokoro Obinkita Arochukwu Local Government Area of the state following a tip-off.
Reports have it that the girl whose name was simply given as Ada was rescued with a chain tied on her neck and limbs where she was locked away by her parents.
The information has it that rumours of the plight of the young girl first came to public knowledge through a social media platform; WhatsApp, with sketchy details of the incident.
The video was said to have unsettled the First Lady who is also Chairman of the State Action Committee on Gender-Based Violence when she came across the video showing the girl tied with a chain.
The First Lady was said to have ordered an investigation of the online posts to unravel the facts, and possibly rescue the child.
According to eye witness accounts, personnel of the NSCDC had to forcefully gain entry into the building to rescue Ada who was placed in chains and locked in the house by her mother.
The mother of the victim was subsequently arrested by the NSCDC personnel after rescuing the victim.
Ada’s mother who gave her name as Blessing claimed that her daughter had a mental challenge, adding that she had to chain her to prevent her from wandering off.
A representative of Abia First Lady, Mr Chika Ojiegbe, who spoke to journalists at the State Headquarters of the NSCDC following the arrest of Mrs Blessing and rescue of her child (Ada), said there was no excuse for the inhuman treatment meted on the girl by her mother.
According to Ojiegbe, the woman should have sought medical help for her child if her claims over the mental health status of her daughter were true.
Ojiegbe who is the Chief Press Secretary of Abia First Lady said that his boss was concerned about the treatment meted on the girl, adding that abuse of any sort should not have occurred no matter the circumstance.
He revealed that the First Lady’s Vicar Hope Foundation has taken custody of the abused girl with a view to facilitating expert psychiatric evaluation to ascertain her condition and provide treatment.
Also speaking, Apostle Innocent Akomas of the Child Protection Network Abia State chapter, who collaborated in effecting the rescue of the girl, decried the attitude of the girl’s parent in dehumanizing the young girl, and commended the Civil Defence operatives for its quick action in responding to the distress call, the moment the Vicar Hope Foundation and the Child Protection Network called upon them.
Public Relations Officer of the federal government agency, Mr Ndukwe Aguiyi confirmed the arrest and rescue of both the suspect and the victim, adding that the State Commandant of the Civil Defence Corps has directed a thorough investigation on the incident.