Today makes it a month and two days that the family of Ifeoma Stella Abugu received from the police the news of their daughter’s death. The long-awaited post-mortem reports are out and it clearly shows that the family was right in their suspicion – the SARS officials raped and murdered their daughter.
Correspondents had earlier reported that Late Ifeoma, a graduate of the Institute of Management and Technology, IMT, Enugu was arrested by three SARS operatives on Thursday, September 10, 2020, when they invaded the home of her fiancé, Afam Ugwunwa, at Wumba village in the Lokogoma district of Abuja.
Ifeoma’s Journey to SARS
The SARS officers arrested Ifeoma in lieu of her fiance who they alleged had hard substances in his possession.
Four days later, they reported to her family that she was dead and her body was deposited at the Gwagwalada Specialist Hospital.
The family, in their confused state, reported the case at the Apo Police Division in Abuja. However, the family lost faith in the Apo police and petitioned the IGP for the case to be transferred to the Force Headquarters. The case was later transferred to the FCT Police Command led by Commissioner of Police, Bala Ciroma.
The family had a strong conviction that Ifeoma was raped and traumatized to death after sighting her corpse. The police argued that such allegation was very strong because the SARS operatives allegedly met Ifeoma unconscious in the apartment and took her to the hospital.
This account happened to be contrary to neighbours’ accounts who said the Late Ifeoma was picked up in a healthy state.
Newsmen continued to push to know the names of the SARS officers involved, however, we were made to understand that the police wants findings to be discrete.
The family lawyer, Barr. Ifeanyi Cosmas Mamah, told our correspondent that CP Bala Ciroma had ordered a post-mortem, as part of discrete investigations to unravel the true cause of her death.
Barr. Cosmas said:
“The case has been transferred from the Apo police division to the FCT Command and the Commissioner of Police, Bala Ciroma, has ordered for an autopsy to be done to ascertain the cause of her death.
“I can also confirm to you that the SARS officers who are responsible for her death and were at large have been identified, arrested and are currently undergoing interrogation at the station.
“Miss Ifeoma just rounded up her NYSC and did her introduction with her fiance on the 6th of September and her traditional wedding was billed for December, 2020.
“Residents in the area have affirmed that the SARS picked her up on September 10th but the police have continued to say they met her unconscious when they broke into her fiance’s apartment and took her to the hospital.
“We have strong reasons to believe that Ifeoma was sexually assaulted before she was killed. That is why we wrote a petition to the Inspector-General so that the case be transferred from the Apo Police Station to the Police Headquarters. We lost faith in Apo Division.”
The family also moved to petition the International Human Right Commission (IHRC); a civil society group, Transparency International; the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP) and other relevant bodies, to get justice for their daughter whose future was cut short by the ruthless SARS officers.
The Autopsy Report
This medium reliably gathered that the autopsy was concluded on Monday, October 5, 2020, and the report indicated that late Ifeoma was raped by the SARS officers who also subjected her to torture and trauma till she died; and her body deposited at the Gwagwalada Specialist.
The family, supported by Senator Chukwuka Utazi (Senator representing the victim’s constituency) were assured by CP Ciroma that the SARS operatives will be prosecuted.
The family lawyer told our correspondent that the police have refused to make a copy of the autopsy report which indicted the SARS operatives to the family as they say the case is for the police.
Barr. Cosmas said:“Expectedly, the long-awaited post mortem examination result came out last Monday. However, the Police has not made it available to our Office for the benefit of our clients (the Abugu family and Ifeoma’s fiance).“From the information we have right now, the result is clearly against the police. We wouldn’t argue with the Police or force them to prosecute based on the outcome of investigations, after all, it’s the case for the State and the Police has the discretion to exercise. Such discretion must be exercised according to law and we expect the police to do justice even if the heavens fall.“We expect the Commissioner of Police, Bala Ciroma, and the Inspector General of Police do justice under all circumstances. When we and Sen. Chukwuma Utazi met the Commissioner of Police last Thursday, he promised to ensure that the Police prosecute the suspects diligently.”The family has seemingly lost faith in the police and seek that the Attorney General, Abubakar Malami, or officers from his department prosecute the defaulting SARS officers.“However, we don’t have confidence in Police prosecutors and would prefer the Attorney General of the Federation or officers of his department to undertake the prosecution of the suspects.“We want the suspects prosecuted and the family of the deceased adequately compensated,” Barr. Cosmas added.