From NGOZI UWUJARE
It is now becoming as clear as daylight that not only is the cows’ invasion of farmlands and wanton destruction of growing crops thereof a big issue in Abia, Ebonyi, Ondo and Oyo states, in Nasarawa State it could end up in having your sister or wife savagely raped and even dealt some deathly machete blows if they tried to put up resistance. Ask the Lukas who have an ongoing case of such criminal proportion at the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation Department, with one Idris Mohammed, 19, right now.
The story has it that one of their sons had an altercation with Mohammed, a herdsman over his decision to allow his cows to invade or stray into their rice farms, their only means of livelihood, and destroy their crops by grazing on them. The incident took place late 2020. But it caused a big rumpus that was later settled by men and officers of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC). Or, so they thought, until Mohammed the mastermind, still smarting from the experience, bided for time to revenge and eventually had his way with a female member of the family, Martha Luka, 25.
Making of the rape and revenge attack
Not only did he and three others gang-rape and break her will and body, in a bid to have their way with her, Mohammed used cutlass to chop off her left hand she was trying to use to protect her naked groin from being violated by their menacing but eager manhood. He also left a deep cut in her left leg she was trying to use to fend them off. At the end, they had their way and took their turns in raping her, despite the young woman’s futile attempts to protect her body from being ravaged by the maniacs.
The Nasarawa State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Bola Emmanuel Longe told Saturday Sun that the incident happened on January 8, 2021 when the victim and two of her friends, Cecelia Yusuf and Martha Yusuf were returning from their daily farm job at about 6:30pm.
Suddenly, they were startled by a rustling sound from a nearby bush. Martha the victim recalled that they saw the suspect, Idris Mohammed, rush at them with a cutlass in his hand. Frightened out of their wits by what they saw as a lurking danger, the three girls broke into a run and ran as fast their legs and strength could carry them. But Martha was not that lucky as Mohammed and his gang members caught up with her, raped and cut her and left her in the pool of her own blood. CP Longe said the victim’s father, Mr. Luka reported the incident at Keana Police Division. And, that was how police detectives were given a marching order to trail, track down and arrest the suspect. On January 9, 2021, a day after the incident, they had him in their dragnet. As you read this, he is still in their custody.
Victim’s father speaks
Mr. Luka who confirmed Longe’s narrative while speaking with Saturday Sun explained that it was Cecelia and Martha who rushed to the house to report the ugly incident, after their lucky escape from the suspect and his gang members. “I rushed to the scene and saw my daughter in a pool of her blood. Not only did she have deep injuries on her left leg, she had her left hand chopped off. With the assistance of some friends, I rushed her to Keana General Hospital before reporting the case at Keana Police Division.”
On what prompted the unleashing of such beastly behaviour on his poor innocent daughter, Mr. Luka recalled that his son had an issue with Mohammed over his decision to allow his cows to go grazing on his son’s rice farm and destroying the rice crops thereof. “The case happened in 2020 and the Nigerian Civil Defence Corps officers intervened in the matter,” he said. “The community leaders also waded into the matter and the matter was settled. What I didn’t know was that Mohammed and his syndicate were planning a revenge attack. And, this is the way they decided to pay back: by not only raping my daughter but also maiming her. I want justice to be done by police authorities in this case.”
Victim’s story and appeal to Governor Sule
Martha, his daughter, still trying to recover from the trauma of the January 8 attack, in a chat with Saturday Sun, recalled how it all started. “It was on January 8, 2020. I was coming back from the farm in the company of my two friends, Cecelia and Martha when we heard a sound. Suddenly, Mohammed and his gang came out from the bush. I saw Mohammed chasing me with cutlass. While my two friends escaped, he raped me and used the cutlass to chop off my left hand. He also tried to cut off my left leg but didn’t succeed. He left me in a pool of my blood.
“He and his gang abandoned me. It was dark and I was helpless. I shouted for help but nobody came until I heard the voice of my father and her friends. They were the ones that assisted me and rushed me to hospital where I received treatment. While I was there, police detectives called me to come and identify the suspect who was in police custody. I want to use this opportunity to call on the Governor of Nasarawa State, Engineer Abdullahi Sule to assist me. I am now a handicap. I need work to sustain my life. Before now, I had two hands which I used to labour, work and earn my daily living. Today I don’t have them anymore. My parents are poor. I need to survive in life. I was the one taking care of my parents; there was nobody. I want the Governor of Nasarawa State to give me any job that will make me survive this ordeal.”
Culprit’s admission of guilt, police still on trail of fleeing members
Mohammed readily admitted culpability when confronted by Saturday Sun. “It is true that I macheted the victim,” he said. “I raped her but we are three that carried out the act. I had an issue with her senior brother over my cow that went to his farmland. They didn’t allow my cow to eat on the farm. But I didn’t know that it would reach this extent. I was arrested by police detectives on January 9, 2021.”
One of the community leaders in Angwan Adagha Village, Mr. Suleiman Isa, expressed shock over Mohammed Idris and his gang’s decision to attack Martha Lukas. CP Longe said the suspect will soon be charged to court to face the law while his other gang members who are at large will soon be fished out.