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|Losing Child to Rape: Girl,14, Cries Went Unanswered Until Illness, Sudden Death||| Print ||
|Written by Henry Karmo (0886522495); FPA Staff Writer|
|Monday, 24 December 2012 00:16|
Monrovia - Settling a matter of rape out of court has resulted in the death of a 14-year old Liberian girl.
Olivia Gbanjah Jallah Zinnah suffered repeated sexual abuse at the hands of her uncle since the age of seven. But the mother decided to settle the matter between families without getting the police involved, according to the Ministry of Gender.
Olivia’s uncle – her mother’s brother – allegedly raped her at age 7 in Todee District, Montserrado County, the Ministry stated during the funeral held on Saturday.
Olivia’s mother feared her family would shun her if she refused their desire to settle the matter without police, the ministry said.
For the next six years, Olivia received repeated surgeries, and had a colostomy bag attached to her side for bodily waste excretion.
At the funeral, her mother said while Olivia was alive she did not know happiness because the hospital was a place she frequently visited.
Six months after the rape had occurred, Olivia’s paternal Grand uncle, during a family meeting, saw that the girl was not looking well and asked women in the family what happened. The women told him Olivia had been raped according to family sources.
The man, only identified as “Uncle Lawrence,” reported the case to the police at which time the alleged perpetrator Junior Nupolu was apprehended and taken to the Kakata Police Depot in Margibi County and was later forwarded to court. Nupolu (rapist) was later set free by the court, according to the Gender ministry.
As a result of the police involvement the Ministry of Gender was informed about the rape case and decided to take Olivia to the JFK Hospital in Monrovia where she underwent the first of several surgeries.
At the funeral service for Olivia, the Children’s Parliament of Liberia in their tribute condemned the act that led the child to an early grave describing it as “complete wickedness.”
“We want justice for the death of our colleague. We are not prepare to see other girls be raped and died while they go free,” they stated.
“The government of Liberia, we want you to treat this case with seriousness and give justice to our lost colleague. She too deserved justice because she is a Liberian.”
Olivia is the third girl to die in 2012 as a result of being raped according to the Gender Ministry.
“Will there be many young ladies to join the men implementing government’s “Vision 2030” if most of our little girls will die in this manner?” a senior member of the Women Empowerment Initiative in Liberia Mrs. Sweetie Saar said at the funeral service.
“Is it because she is not a Johnson, Dennis, or Jackson this is why her case is not given much attention? I wonder why the President didn’t sent a representative to the funeral of this little girl. Where are our lawmakers we want justice.”
Before her death Olivia attended the Star International School in Caldwell.
The child died last Tuesday following years of suffering from rape-related injuries, she was buried at the Thinkers Village Cemetery on the Roberts Field Highway.
|Last Updated on Monday, 24 December 2012 08:14|