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Friday, August 7, 2009

Kumasi rape victim narrates ordeal

The 19-year-old seamstress apprentice who was allegedly raped in the full glare of horrified onlookers at Asafo, a Kumasi suburb, on the dawn of Wednesday July 29, 2009, yesterday gave a tearful narration of her ordeal to a packed Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) Circuit Court.

As she spoke, Eric Adjei Bawuah, the 28-year-old gym instructor also broke down and wept bitterly, with his wife looking on and the audience moaning.

The accused person was making his second appearance in court after he was remanded by the same court on Monday August 3, 2009.

Justice Frimpong, the presiding judge, for the second time remanded the former Mr. Ghana contestant into prison custody to reappear at the same court today.

Led by Chief State Attorney, Mr. Williams Pobee, the victim told the court that she was at the Asafo Neoplan Station that dawn to board a bus to Accra after visiting her sister in Kumasi when the accused grabbed her hand and demanded that she followed him.

She said she refused because she did not know the accused but he told her he was a ‘killer’ and threatened to deal ruthlessly with her if she dared refuse to heed his orders.

The accused, she said, held her hand tightly and bundled her into a taxi and ordered the driver to drive, dropping her at a nearby washing bay after which he sent her to an open space drinking spot.

According to the victim, though she was screaming aloud, people around at the time could not muster courage to come to her aid.

She said at the drinking spot, Bawuah ordered her to undress but she refused. This infuriated the accused who tore her clothes into pieces, thereby stripping her naked.

The victim told the packed court that the accused, after stripping her, stated that had it not been for the love of God, he would have stabbed her to death for being stubborn.

She said after stripping her naked, the accused, who was still holding her hand tightly, undressed himself, pulled a condom from his pocket and used his other hand to put on the condom.

Afterwards, he pulled one of the chairs at the spot and sat on it, ordering her to sit on his erected penis.

She said she again refused to comply; but the accused inserted his hand into her vagina and forcibly dragged her to sit on his erected penis, after which he took her through a devastating bout of sex.

The victim said all this while, she was screaming aloud for help, but the onlookers who gathered at the place could not come forward to rescue her because of the stern warning the accused issued to the people before beginning the dastardly act.

According to her, the accused, before the ‘ugly’ act, warned that he would stab anyone who dared come near the ‘action spot’ with a view to rescuing her.

She said she was almost collapsing due to the ‘rough’ nature of the sex; when she realized that a Good Samaritan had appeared to rescue her.

According to her, she was stark naked and struggling to stand on her feet when the police appeared on the scene and arrested the accused.

She said the guy who rescued her, thereafter gave her jeans and t-shirt to wear and also took her to the hospital for medical attention.

According to the victim, the accused, after raping her, also robbed her of GH¢30, which she was going to use to travel to Accra where she is a seamstress apprentice at Nungua.

The victim told the court that since that lamentable experience, she had been traumatized to the point that she could not sleep nor urinate freely without experiencing pains.

She therefore entreated the court to critically examine the case and let the law take its course to serve as deterrent to others.

Obeng Jnr, the guy who rescued the victim, in his testimony, told the court that he was at the spot when the accused brought the victim to the place, tore her dress into shreds after which he also undressed himself.

He said after undressing himself, the accused put on a condom after which he pulled one of the chairs and asked the victim to sit on his erected penis.

According to him, the accused had taken the victim through a prolonged bout of sex before he appeared on the scene to rescue her.

He said the onlookers could not venture to save the victim because they were afraid they could be harmed by the accused, whom he said, had been terrorizing guys in the area.

Obeng told the court that before he made the attempt to rescue the victim, he told one of the onlookers to take away the accused person’s clothing and also call in the police quickly.

He said due to this arrangement, when the police arrived on the scene, the accused was still naked, together with the victim.

Obeng, who said he was given several hefty slaps by the accused when he attempted rescuing the victim, noted that the police, after arresting the accused, took along the condom he used.

He said after clothing the victim, they took her to the hospital for doctors to give her medical attention.

The accused, who wore black striped long sleeved shirt and blue jeans to match, similarly wept uncontrollably as the judge asked him intermittently to respond to the narration of the victim.

In view of this, Justice Frimpong adjourned the case to today to enable Bawuah, who was without a legal counsel, to pull himself together to be able to tell the court his side of the story.

The wife of the accused was among the large crowd of spectators who thronged the court to witness the proceedings which lasted close to an hour.

The accused, according to the prosecution team, on the dawn of Wednesday July 29, 2009, bundled the 19-year-old girl into a taxi at knife point at the Asafo Neoplan Station in Kumasi and took her into an open space drinking spot where he allegedly raped and robbed her of GH¢30.

This was when the seamstress apprentice had come to the station to board a bus to Accra after visiting her sister in Kumasi.

The accused, according to the prosecution, in his earlier caution statement to the police, admitted to having sex with the girl at an open space but however denied the two counts of rape and robbery leveled against him.

The prosecution said the accused claims that the victim is a prostitute who charged him GH¢10 before consenting to the act.

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