By ALIYU MUSA, Damaturu
It was a bizarre moment for the people of Ko’e ward in Gadaka town of Fika local government area of Yobe State when on February 8, a woman screamed loudly in her room broad daylight to attract their attention and rescue her from an intruder.
A 35-year-old man, Mohammed Faruk, who hails from Unguwar Abuja of Gadaka town and is believed to be a divorcee, was believed to have raped her.
Mohammed Faruk (Mahamman) had entered the serene apartment of the woman for the act after realising her neighbours had left for work.
The police spokesman, ASP Abdulkarim Dungus, said the command was aware of the incident and had arrested the suspect following a report from residents.
A police press release obtained by LEADERSHIP said, “On 8/2/2021 at about 14:00hrs, police in Fika divisional police headquarters apprehended one Mohammed Faruk of Gadaka town who intruded into a 90 year-old-woman’s room in same area of Gadaka thereby molested, assaulted and raped her.
“On preliminary investigation the culprit confessed to the commission of the said alleged rape. Medical examination confirmed penetration and identified drips of semen believed to be the culprit’s ejaculation.
“The case is currently under investigation and onward transfer to state CID for discreet investigation and subsequent prosecution.
“In view of the recent rape cases reported, the command is committed to bringing an end to these barbaric attacks on minors and even old age victims.
“To this end, the commissioner of police appreciated the cooperation of the good people of Yobe State and solicited for more.”
The police spokesman said rape cases had become the leading crime in Yobe followed by culpable homicide.
“I want to tell you that in 2020 alone, Yobe recorded 102 rape cases followed by culpable homicide, hence it is a source of concern for us as a command.
“The command is more than ever ready to work day and night towards bringing the culprits among other criminals to book for a peaceful and progressive society,” Dungus said.
He said the command had deepened investigation into Faruk’s case to ensure that nothing is left behind in the quest for justice for the aged woman and her family.
A resident said Mohammed is an indigene of Gadaka town and his father lives in Gabar da Kasuwa area of the town known as Abuja.
Another resident, Ibrahim Habu, said though people were aware of reports of rape cases on the media, Mohammed’s act had upset many in the town.
“Mohammed was born and raised in Gadaka and for him to commit this kind of heinous act is quite disturbing and unbelievable.
“Imagine a young man thinking of having sexual affairs with this aged woman. I think even if someone is mad or under the influence of drugs he would hardly think of committing this barbaric act.
“For me, this man is not himself and he needs to be taught a lesson so that it serves as a deterrent to people with such behaviour,” Habu said.
A 56-year-old resident of the area who doesn’t want his name published said it was a sad and devastating story in the history of Gadaka town.
“We have been hearing of rapes cases across the country and even beyond but I have never heard that an aged woman of more than 80 years was raped by anyone,” he said.
The woman is currently in hospital following injuries inflicted on her during the incident.
LEADERSHIP Sunday learnt that despite her old age, she resisted the assault which resulted in the injuries.
Yobe State had in 2018 signed into law the state penal code amendment law 2018 which prescribes punishment for rape, kidnapping and unnatural offences.
The former governor, Alhaji Ibrahim Gaidam, while signing the law, made provision for the amendment of section 282 of the penal code to institute the maximum punishment for rapists, kidnappers and those who commit unnatural offences.
The law stipulates clearly that whoever commits rape where the victim is a minor, shall be punished with imprisonment for life and where the victim is an adult, shall be jailed for a term of 25 years.
He said the law also stipulates that a register of convicted rape and related offenders would be kept by the court and made available to the public to expose culprits.