Wednesday 22 May 2013


• 23-year-old victim begs for financial assistance to go to India for treatment
IF anyone had told Blessing Ikhumhi that Okosun Cyril, the man she once loved, would turn around and bath her with acid, she would not have believed it.
Neighbours and friends used to see the duo as Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet'.  But they were wrong.
Even Blessing once saw him as "the best thing that could ever happen to her," because she never believed the words of William Shakespeare, which asserts that, "there are daggers in men's smile."
Their romance turned sour with tragic consequence for Blessing, a 23-year-old student of Edo State School of Health Technology. If she would ever regain her sight she would see all men as "monsters" because she has seen "hell" in the last three months as a patient at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH), Benin City.

Doctors in the hospital believe she may never see again except she is flown to a specialist hospital in India, where her sight could be restored.
Blessing's story is a sad one. Her ordeal began when she told his boyfriend, who is now in police custody in Benin, that she was no longer interested in what she described as "uninspiring relationship."
The news did not go down well with him. He visited her house and asked for a talk.
The victim had gone outside to meet with the man whom she thought might have come to settle with her and probably, persuade her to continue in the relationship, but to Blessing's shock, she was bathed with acid.
From that fateful day, she has seized to see and has been on admission at the UBTH.
"He was my boyfriend and we had arguments in February. He beat me to the extent that I was not able to go to school for three days. I told him I was no longer interested in the relationship. He later tried to forcibly take my telephone, but I refused to give it to him. I told him he was not the one who bought it for me."
"On March 23, he called and asked me to meet him in front of our house. I refused initially, but he insisted, so I came out. He asked: "Do you mean you don't want me again?" I said:  "No! I was no more interested in the relationship.  And immediately, he poured the acid on my face. Since that day, I have been on admission at the UBTH and the doctors say I might not see again except I am flown to India where my eyes could be restored. "
She noted that Cyril was the last person she expected to treat her so badly.
"I never knew he would have the heart to pour acid on me. I made a mistake. I have learnt the biggest lesson of my life. My prayer now is that God should touch kind-hearted Nigerians to come to my aide so that I would be able to get treatment abroad, since my parents cannot afford it." Ikhumhi, a native of Fugar, Etsako Local Council of Edo State, has pleaded with public-spirited Nigerians to come to her aid.
Domestic violence has been on the increase nowadays as aggrieved lovers have been pouring acid on their estranged partners.
In March 2010, Oluwatoyin Safiu Morufu, from Oyo State, was reportedly bathed with acid by his wife of over 16 years, Uloma Beatrice, from Abia State.
In 2011, a suspect, Samson Igbinomewahin, 47, was arraigned at an Ebute Metta Chief Magistrate's Court, Lagos, for allegedly pouring acid on his wife, Mrs. Susan Jeremiah, 31.
Also, a 35-year-old man, Ndubisi Okoro in 2011 allegedly bathed his wife, Anthonia, with acid. He was arraigned before an Apapa Magistrate's Court in Lagos, charged with attempted murder.
In November 10, 2012, a jilted man in Ikotun, an outskirt of Lagos, bathed his wife with acid. Men of Ikotun Police Division immediately arrested him. The list keeps rising everyday as acid bath has become a weapon of revenge.

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