Anambra widow forced to drink water used in bathing corpse

Anambra State Women and Social Welfare Commissioner, Hon Ify Obinabo has rescued a widow Mrs Patricia Eligbue from her relatives who forced her to drink water used in washing the corpse of her husband’s nephew.

Narrating her ordeal to the Honourable Commissioner, Mrs Eligbue who lost her husband a long time ago noted that although she’s from Obe Agwa, her husband is from Atani both in Ogbaru local government area of the state.

She went on to say that after her husband’s death, she has been subjected to all kinds of abuse ranging from her husband’s family calling her a witch and other kinds of physical abuse.

According to her, one day the husband’s siblings invaded her house where she was staying with her only child and started beating her allegeding that she’s responsible for all the unfortunate things happening to them.

She said that it was after the incident that her relatives ran to her aid and while she was about to go with them, her husband’s family refused stating that she needs to stay till after a burial ceremony of the husband’s nephew who died.

The poor widow explained that on the day of the burial, she was summoned inside the room where they kept the dead body by one Mr Albert, Godwin, Ozoemina and Onyeàmà. 

She said that they placed a cutlass on the deceased body and asked her to walk over it four times of which she did before they washed off the corpse and forced her to drink the water before pouring the remaining on her.

The widow stated that they also accused her of killing the deceased.

Reacting to the ugly incident, Hon Obinabo noted that although the alleged culprits have been arrested, she will make sure that the law takes it’s full course.

The Commissioner went further to warn everyone to desist from any form of harmful traditional practices against widows in the state as such would not be tolerated.

Upon investigation by newsmen, it was discovered that the deceased died after a brief illness at her sister’s house somewhere around Ozubulu. 

It was also discovered that the incident started as a result of a dream of the sister in law where she claimed that she saw Mrs Patricia strangling the deceased.

Another discovery worthy of note was that one Mr Albert, has refused to share a farm land belonging to him and the late widow’s husband.

Although the deceased cause of death wasn’t ascertained as of the time of writing this report, it was gathered that he had a swollen feet and body before his death.

Nevertheless, the alleged perpetuators denied the allegation but have been trying their best to conceal the act until the Women and Social Welfare Commissioner stepped into the case.

The Honourable Commissioner in collaboration with the Police has arrested the culprits and they will be arraigned before the Children, Sexual and Gender Based Violence Magistrate court in Awka on Wednesday.


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