Justice Musa Danladi, the chief judge of Katsina, says some parents and relatives are frustrating the courts in adjudicating rape cases by withdrawing such matters.
Mr Danladi said this at the launch of the State Action Plan (SAP) on women, peace and security held in Katsina.
“Unfortunately, some parents easily compromise while the case is ongoing by negotiating with the accused. Most of the cases get withdrawn midway through trials, while some do not even get to the court. This type of action will not result in getting justice for the victims,” he said.
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The Katsina chief judge gave an instance of a girl raped, and the case was taken to court, but before the suspect could be arraigned, the alleged victim changed her story.
“Such unfortunate things happen because the parents or relatives have compromised by taking money from the suspect. Unfortunately, in every violence or conflict, women and children have been at the receiving end as victims of sexual, physical or psychological violence,” the top judge said. “They end up being widowed or orphaned.” We cannot allow this to continue. We need strong legal frameworks put in place to check this.”
The chief judge commended networks like the High-Level Women Advocacy (HILWA), the Federation of Muslim Women Association of Nigeria (FOMWAN), the Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association (NAWOWA) and the Nigerian Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) for being in the forefront of the issue of rape and gender violence.