Two former classmates at Olashore International School in Iloko-Ijesha, Osun State, Obiamaka Chidinma Azubike and Okwuehi Ogboi, have approached the Lagos High Court over an alleged sexual and physical assault claim and its aftermath.
According to The Nation, Azubike is seeking an apology in five national dailies and two social media platforms including Instagram and N510 million as damages from Ogboi for the sexual and physical assault she allegedly suffered from 13 of her schoolmates in 2004 when she was the school’s public relations prefect.
Ogboi is a Senior Special Adviser to the Delta State Governor on Special Duties.
Meanwhile, Ogboi is also seeking N250 million from Azubike for the alleged severe injury he suffered because of Azubike’s alleged defamatory publications against him.
In her statement of defence to Ogboi’s suit, Azubike alleged that the incident occurred on the night of May 1, 2004.
She said, “While the Defendant (Azubike) and her friend were heading back to their hostel that night, the Defendant was sexually assaulted by 13 of her male classmates including the Claimant as they all inserted their hands, gripping and thrusting into all the sensitive parts of her body with utmost disregard and as well laughing at her tears till help came.
“She managed to run while the assaulters including the Claimant chased her but when they realised that she was headed towards Dr Burgess, the School Principal’s residence, they all tactically withdrew.
“On her arrival at the Principal’s residence, the Defendant was asked to explain what happened by the Principal and his wife, and subsequently she was made to write two statements on the incident after which she was taken to the clinic to be examined by one of the school’s nurse, Ms. Sade/Mary who at the time confirmed that there was vaginal trauma.”
She alleged that the school failed to inform her parents or the police of the incident and generally handled the matter poorly, including trying to cover up the incident by accusing her of lying, taking a “boys’ only route” and punishing her along with her assaulters.
Azubike is represented by Funmi Falana, Folakemi Falana and Taiwo E. Olawanle of Falana & Falana Chambers while Ogboi is represented by Adeola Owoade.
The defendant is seeking “A declaration that the Claimant (Ogboi) played a key role in both sexual and physical assault of the defendant and as such is not fit and proper to hold any public office in Nigeria.
“A declaration that the sexual and physical assault occasioned by the Claimant and other students of over 17 years ago has caused the Defendant reputational, psychological and financial losses.
“A declaration that the Claimant’s involvement in the physical and sexual assault of the Defendant is a criminal offence which Olashore International School should have reported to the police for investigation and prosecution.
“An order directing the Claimant in conjunction with Olashore International School to publish in five (5) National Dailies and two (2) Social Media platforms including Instagram an apology to the Defendant for the reputational and psychological damage the action of the Claimant and other students of Olashore International School has caused her.”
But in his statement of claim, Ogboi described Azubike’s publications of the incident on social media as false and libellous.
He is also seeking a perpetual injunction restraining the Defendant from any further publication of the defamatory words, a “retraction of the libellous posts” and a letter of apology.”
Furthermore, he is seeking general damages of N250 million as well as costs of the suit.