by Aisha Abdulrasaq
An Ekiti State High Court has sentenced a retired Vice-Principal, Taiwo Ajayi to life imprisonment for defiling a 12-year old pupil.
Ajayi, who was the Vice-Principal (Academic) of St. Mary’s Girl Grammar School, Ikole-Ekiti, had on March 18, 2014 asked the victim, a pupil of the school, to his office, locked the door and had carnal knowledge of her.
It was also learnt that Ajayi had gagged the pupil with a piece of cloth to prevent her screams from being heard while he defiled her.
The court found Ajayi guilty of raping a minor contrary to Section 31(2) of the Child Rights Law of Ekiti State, 2012.
Justice Oluwatoyin Abodunde on Thursday held that based on the strength of the evidence presented to the court, the prosecution has proven its case beyond reasonable doubt.
The prosecution counsel led by Mr. A.E Arogundade of the state’s Ministry of Justice, presented a medical report, the statement of the accused, report of the panels set up by the state teaching service commission and the statement of the victim before the court.
The case was first heard on October 14, 2016, and the convict pleaded not guilty to the charge brought against him.
Abodunde, while speaking on the matter said, “Cases of child defilement have been on the increase lately and to serve as a deterrent to others, my view is that the punishment stipulated by the law was deliberate to deter the offence and protect the rights of the child.
The defense counsel is pleading for leniency and praying for a fine instead of the due punishment. My question is; who pays the victim for the lifetime scar of the trauma and torture of rape?
I am unable to deviate from the provisions of the law in this instance. The defendant is found guilty as charged and sentenced to life imprisonment.”