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Lawyer in Assault Case Will be Charged Even if Wife Doesn’t Support It – Minister

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The Minister of Women Affairs, Uju Ohanenye, has vowed that the Uyo lawyer, Ekere Ebong, who assaulted the wife would be prosecuted, whether the wife wants that to happen or not.

The police in Akwa Ibom State arrested the lawyer on Monday.

“Even if the woman decides she doesn’t want her husband to be sued, due to family pressure, the man must face the law as justice will have its way,” Ms Ohanenye said in a post she made on X on Sunday, about the incident which was captured in a viral video.

Women who are survivors of domestic violence are often reluctant to have their husbands prosecuted for it because of family pressure.

Ms Ohanenye must have spoken against the background of such a hindrance to the prosecution of suspects in cases of gender-based violence nationwide.

The video clip

In the clip, the assaulted woman wore only underwear and had a bloodied face. She is seen breathing heavily while crying for help, apparently from the neighbours who were filming the incident.

A man’s voice could be heard from the background rebuking Mr Ebong for assaulting the wife.

“What are you doing? Look at the way this woman is bleeding. Jesus Christ!” the man said to Mr Ebong who appeared unperturbed and was asking the wife to hand over a key to him.

The neighbours shielded the woman, as she walked away from her husband.

“This remains one of the most insane and unbelievable scenes one has seen in the brutalisation of women,” the women affairs minister said of the video.

She said she had ordered the arrest of the lawyer. I promise this act cannot be swept under the carpet,” she added.

The police in Akwa Ibom described Mr Ebong as a “known habitual perpetrator of violent acts against his wife”, and assured that the lawyer would be arraigned as soon as the investigation is concluded on the matter.

Akwa Ibom Govt to assist assaulted woman

Meanwhile, Governor Umo Eno of Akwa Ibom State has said that the state government would assist the woman to get justice in the matter.

“The Government and people of Akwa Ibom State condemn this grave act of gender-based violence in the strongest possible terms,” Mr Eno said in a statement issued in Uyo on Monday by his spokesperson, Ekerete Udoh.

“Government will assist the lady who was so dehumanised by a man who otherwise should be the one to protect her and ensure that justice is served in line with the provisions of the law against Gender-Based Violence,” Mr Eno added.

The governor expressed happiness that the lawyer had been arrested and that he would soon be charged.

He said the state government has zero tolerance for gender-based violence.

Mr Eno, in addition, said “Mr Ebong’s outrageous and egregious display of violence is totally alien to our (Akwa Ibom) culture.”

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