From Tony Osauzo, Benin
A paediatrician with the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital (ISTH), Irrua in Edo State, Dr Chiamaka Ogbonnaya, has been reportedly arrested by the police for alleged assault and battering of her housemaid identified as Comfort (surname withheld), who is said to be in Junior Secondary School 2.
The medical Doctor was accused of brutalizing the girl frequently with a mopping stick, turning stick, cane and any other object in sight on her ribcage and then sending the girl out and allegedly giving her raw rice as her food for one week.
Spokesman of the Edo State Police Command, Chidi Nwabuzor, while confirming the arrest, said “Dr Ogbonaya Chiamaka of Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital was actually arrested by Irrua Division on the alleged offence of child abuse and battering and currently the matter is under the investigation of the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the investigation that is SCID and further development will be made known to the public.”
Meanwhile, the state Commissioner for Education, Dr Joan Osa Oviawe, said she would respond once she gets the full report of the case.
She however warned that there is zero-tolerance for the abuse of children in Edo State, saying that “At the Ministry of Education, we take very seriously the social safeguarding of all our pupils and students. There is the Child Rights Law which stipulates all kinds of punishment including jail terms for adults who abuse children.
“A child who has been traumatized at home will not be able to learn at school. His Excellency Governor Obaseki has given us the mandate to ensure quality and relevant education across all levels of education and under our EdoBEST 2.0 education reform agenda, psycho-social support for all our learners is a priority,” Oviawe said.