The police in Lagos have arrested an Islamic cleric, Alfa Abdul-Lateef Mustapha, 38, for alleged defilement of his wife’s nine-year-old niece.
The man was apprehended by members of the Child Protection Network (CPN) in Somolu and handed over to the Bariga Police Station on Sunday.
He was allegedly caught in the act the previous day by neighbours.
It was gathered that the child had complained to neighbours that she was being sexually molested by her aunt’s husband, but they did not believe her. Neighbours, however, caught the man in the act on Saturday.
The suspect, who claimed it was the first time he slept with the minor, apologised. He was, however, challenged by the victim, who said he had raped her more than three times.
A source, who informed our correspondent about the incident, said the suspect’s relatives wanted to cover up the incident, but his wife and two others quickly alerted the CPN unit in Somolu.
“The family wanted to fight the wife. They wanted the matter to die down. They threatened the girl and cursed her. They attempted to attack an activist, who invited the police,” the source said.
Confirming the incident, CPN Head in Somolu Toyin Okanlawon said the victim had been taken to the Mirable Centre for examination.
He said: “The relations came to the station in hijab and jalamia, pleading that the alfa be released. As it stands now, the victim is not safe in that house. She and her aunt slept at the station for safety following the reaction of the suspect’s relatives.
“We have appealed to the Juvenile Centre at Alakara, Mushin to provide shelter for the victim. She was brought from Kano last January by her aunt so that she could be looked after properly, but the woman’s husband has turned a predator.
“I hail the Divisional Police Officer (DPO), Bariga because he provided food for the victim and her aunt when he realised that they had not eaten. He also calmed the girl because she was tearful and traumatised.”
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