The Anambra State Ministry of Women Affairs says a landlady identified as Amaka Okonkwo has poured hot water mixed with pepper on her tenant, Imabong William, over a rent increment dispute.
According to a Press statement by the ministry, the incident took place last Thursday in Enugwu-Ukwu, a large town in Anambra State.
The victim was quoted as saying that a few months ago, her house rent was suddenly jacked up and that when she couldn’t pay the higher rent, the landlady, Amaka Okonkwo, told her to vacate the property.
Imabong alleged that her rent expired just a month ago, and that she had pleaded with the landlady to grant her time to sort out the rent issues. However, she said, the landlady continued to quarrel with her over the matter.
The report also mentioned that during a previous argument, the landlady had allegedly threatened to harm the tenant, but the tenant was unaware of the specific plans.
The Anambra State Ministry of Women Affairs further reported that on the day of the incident, the tenant was washing her clothes in the compound when Mrs. Okonkwo allegedly boiled hot water mixed with pepper and poured it on her from behind.
Imabong also alleged that her landlady showed no remorse after the attack; instead, she allegedly threatened to cause more harm if the tenant didn’t vacate the property.
According to the report, when news of the incident spread, members of the Enugwu-Ukwu Women Group gathered at the location to apprehend the suspect. The incident was also reported to the police, resulting in the arrest of Mrs. Amaka Okonkwo, who is currently in custody at the Nimo Police Station.
The Anambra State Commissioner of Women and Social Welfare, Ify Obinabo, reportedly visited the hospital to see the victim.
While commending the Enugwu-Ukwu Women Group for promptly reporting the incident to the authorities, she warned the public against engaging in criminal activities.
The commissioner emphasised that the Anambra State government would not tolerate anyone found guilty of assault and encouraged everyone to always report crimes to the appropriate authorities for swift intervention.
In response, representatives of the women’s group, Lady Chiegbunam Nwosu and Mrs. Florence Okoye, said the community does not support the alleged cruel act of Mrs. Amaka Okonkwo.
They expressed their gratitude to the government for responding to their call for intervention.
The report further mentioned that when the husband of the suspect, Mr. Ebere Okonkwo, was questioned, he denied any involvement in the crime. He also claimed that although he was at home during the incident, he was unaware of his wife’s intentions towards the tenant.
After visiting the victim in the hospital, the group of representatives also visited the Nimo police division, where the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) promised to transfer the case to the State Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for further investigation and prosecution.