By Deborah Oladejo, Osogbo
Osun State Police has arrested a father and his son for allegedly locking up their 20-year-old daughter and sister in an unkempt house because of her physical challenges.
It was gathered that Miss Opeyemi Olatoke had been abandoned by her parents and siblings, for over five years in the house.
It was also learnt that there was no electricity supply to the house and the only window that should ventilate the room was permanently locked in order to prevent residents from discovering that someone was living in the house while his elder brother, Elijah would visit to drop food for her.
Her parents, Prophet and Mrs Samson Olatoke, were said to have given up on her before isolating her at their family house, (an old and muddy house), situated at Alfa Fire area in Obaagun Street, Ikirun, the headquarters of Ifelodun Local Government Area of Osun State.
Opeyemi’s mother said her daughter’s disabilities started at the age of 4, stating that Opeyemi suddenly woke up from sleep with a loud scream and ever since that day, she had been unable to walk and use her hands.
According to her, “We have tried our best to ensure that Opeyemi becomes normal again. My two shops collapsed in my efforts to ensure that my daughter was healed. It was after all my efforts proved abortive that we took her to the family house. I stay in my son’s house,” the mother narrated.
But respite came Opeyemi’s way when a resident of the state contacted a Non-Governmental Organisation in the state, Value Female Network (VFN), through its toll-free rescue line and disclosed to the NGO that a girl was being locked up in a room by her parents for having disabilities.
On Saturday, January 23, 2021, the teams from the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs and Value Female Network (VFN) stormed the house and rescued her in company with security agents of the Joint Task Force.
Opeyemi was later taken to the Osun State Government Hospital, Asubiaro, on the orders of the Commissioner for Women Affairs, Olubukola Olaboopo.
Meanwhile, Opeyemi’s father and elder brother are still in police custody in Ikirun for confining their daughter in a desolated and stinking room without care and attention.
The team from the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs of the state confirmed the duo’s arrest.