The pregnant wife of the man who named his dog Buhari has cried out for the unjustly treatment of her husband.
The man identified as Mr. Joachim Chinakwe, 41 was arrested and detained at the Sango Ota Police Station, Ogun State, on August 13, 2016, for naming his dog Buhari. He was later released after public protest, only to be rearrested again.
The sudden travial has left his pregnant wife, Ifeoma and 18-mont-old daughter Temi highly devastated.
While lamenting her sorrow to Punch, she said:
“This is the saddest period of my life,” the heartbroken woman said fighting back tears. “Since I met and married my husband three years ago, I have never felt this bad or suffered this much. But since this problem started, I and my daughter have been badly affected,” she continued.
“When I went to the police station last Sunday morning to see him, the officers instead of allowing me in, started abusing me. They told me that they would make sure I give birth behind my husband’s cell. Even though I was crying and pleading with them to allow me see him, they kept abusing me, not minding my present condition.
“Since that day, I have not been able to eat well. Also, I and Temi have been very sick and we have been on medications. On several occasions she would wake me up at night, crying and asking after her father. I don’t know what to tell her, so I would also cry.
“The two of us cannot sleep in the house alone, so in the evenings, I go to my aunty’s house at Ojuore to stay till morning before returning home. I am just praying that all the stress that I have been through and tears that I have shed the past few days don’t affect the baby or even make me to lose the child because already, I am not as healthy as I was before this problem started. I won’t lie to you; life has not been the same for me and my daughter without him around,” the heavily-pregnant mother said before finally succumbing to her emotions.” She cried.
She cried and wailed in a sorrow-laden voice pouring out her heart of the shocking predicament that has befallen her family.
Speaking about the matter, a relative, Obinna Obasi said the case apart from taking its toll on their energies and time, had also drained their pockets.
He said relatives and friends of Chinakwe have even had to borrow money from a micro finance bank to hire lawyers to fight his case – one of whom he said even duped them in the process.
“This matter has really drained us financially,” Obasi revealed. “The little that we even have has been exhausted. We have spent everything on us to get a lawyer and also run around trying to find a solution to this problem. In fact, a few days ago, we had to borrow some money from a micro finance bank because we didn’t want him to remain and die in police cell. The first lawyer we paid to handle the case for us disappeared with our money. We had to go beyond our power to raise money to hire another lawyer. To be honest, I cannot estimate the amount of money we have spent so far on this case in trying to get Joe released,” he said.
Narrating how the entire issue started, Obasi, who said he was with the detained man at the time of his first arrest last Saturday, explained that all efforts to get the matter resolved has been frustrated by the accuser and his backers who have only been pretending to be on the side of peace.
“Kalilu, the main accuser, said Buhari was the name of his father and that Joe deliberately gave his dog that name to taunt him and the rest of the Hausa residents in the area. But we are still wondering if it is now an offence to give your pet animal the name of your choice. Even if you say it is an offence, at least we have all sat together to resolve the whole issue and the man himself has shown some sense of responsibility by saying he was sorry if his action offended anybody. So, why is he still being harassed till now? This is not fair. His persecution is affecting his pregnant wife and little daughter who have both been very sick as a result of the problem,” he said.
The policemen at Sango Police Station have refused to allow anybody near the man, not even his family members as they locked him away.
Acting spokesperson for the Ogun State Police Command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, revealed on Friday that the accused would be arraigned at the Sango Magistrate Court on Monday.
“The man is here with us at Eleweran, he is being detained at the Criminal Investigation Department. The charge will be prepared and he will be arraigned at Sango Magistrate Court on Monday. What he did was highly provocative, it can cause ethnic and religious crisis,” he said.
Baring his mind on the predicament of the man, a human rights lawyer and former Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, Ikeja Branch, Lagos, Monday Ubani revealed that there is no such law in Nigeria’s criminal code which states that it is an offence to give your pets a name of your choice.
According to him, the police cannot arrest and detain a person except they are able to prove that the individual’s action is indeed capable of causing breach of public peace.
He however, wonders why the accused would name a dog after his neighbour’s father as alleged because according to him it could be a bit offensive even though it was not a crime.