In a shocking and disturbing turn of events, Umar Ibrahim, the Village Head of Dan Gulam in Gwaram Local Government Area of Jigawa State, is facing serious allegations of rape and the transmission of HIV to a young girl named Hanatu Yahaya.
The accused, a traditional leader, now finds himself at the center of a legal and public storm that is shaking the foundations of his community.
The accusations came to light through a letter dated October 16, 2023, addressed to the Secretary of Dutse Emirate Council, Dutse Emir’s Palace, and written by Senior State Counsel Kabiru Abdullah Esq. from the Jigawa State Ministry of Justice.
The letter, titled “Notification of arraignment of Umar Ibrahim (Village Head of Dan Gulam) on the offence of rape contrary to section 3 (1) (A and D) of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) Law 2021,” details the serious charges against the Village Head.
What makes this case even more unsettling is the alleged pressure on the emirate to cover up the incident, despite appeals and the state government’s intervention through the Attorney General’s office.
Umar Ibrahim’s attempt to counter the accusations by initiating a defamation of character suit against the victim, her father, and another individual from their village before the Upper Shari’a Court Gwaram has only added to the complexity of the situation.
However, investigations conducted by the Criminal Investigation Department of Jigawa State Police Command have reportedly uncovered evidence of criminal conspiracy and rape cases against Umar Ibrahim, a respected traditional leader.
The letter from the Jigawa State Ministry of Justice reads, “I have been directed by the Hon. Attorney General of Jigawa State to write and notify your Highness that a complaint of rape and infection with HIV was lodged at the Office of the Hon. Attorney General by one Ya’u Muhammad, in which he alleged that Umar Ibrahim (Village Head of Dan Gulam) had engaged his daughter in an illegal sexual intercourse which resulted in her pregnancy and infected her with HIV.”
The gravity of the allegations is not lost on the authorities, as the letter continues, “The legal advice was given and it revealed that prima facie case of criminal conspiracy and rape were made against Umar Ibrahim who, to the Hon. Attorney General’s greatest dismay, is a traditional leader as the village head of Dan Gulam, Gwaram Local Government Area, Jigawa State.”
As the legal proceedings unfold, the family of the affected girl is appealing to civil society and non-governmental organizations to intervene and ensure justice is served in accordance with the provisions of the VAPP Law 2021 of Jigawa State.
Umar Ibrahim has vehemently denied the allegations, claiming that he is not responsible for the girl’s pregnancy.
He asserts that the initial case was not rape but rather an issue concerning a land allocation dispute involving the former chairman of the local government.
He stated, “They are trying to blackmail me. That is why they falsified the allegation that I impregnated. I didn’t know the girl, I have never met her even once in my life. I have had HIV for the past 10 years when I married an infected widow. That is why they are saying I infected that girl, but I swear I didn’t do it.”
This case has sent shockwaves through the community and has raised important questions about justice, accountability, and the protection of vulnerable individuals in society.
The legal proceedings will be closely watched, and the pursuit of truth and justice will be of paramount importance in this unfolding drama.
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