For 36 year-old Mrs Mercy Nnamdi, life can never be the same for her again, she was maimed with hot iron in Ago, Okota area of Lagos, over her husband’s allegation that she was sleeping with his father, life could never have been more cruel.
I was fast asleep when I was woken up by a sharp pain on my back. I thought it was a night mare. But when I opened my eyes, lo and behold, my husband was planting the hot iron he was using on the clothes on me. Immediately I turned, he planted it on my chest. When I raised my hand to prevent it, he planted it on one of my hands .
By then I did not know what to do. I started screaming and calling on my neighbours for help. I raised my leg to prevent him, again, he landed the hot iron on me.
As he planted the hot iron hard on my flesh, he would use a screw driver to peel off the flesh. At a point, I became too weak to shout. I begged him to stop but he would not. Rather, he would ask me to tell him how many times his father slept with me. Even in pains, I begged him to listen to himself and imagine what he was saying.
My response seemed to anger him the more because he would plant it harder, leaving it on my skin and at the same time, asked me to tell him the truth.”
At this point, Crime Guard asked if she was guilty of the claim. She grimaced and replied, “How can that be? The father already has a wife.” Pausing for a while and staring at the ceiling , a position she has been maintaining for several hours, she continued, “ at that point, my baby woke up and started crying . I begged him to allow me breast feed the baby .
But before I could finish the statement, he placed the hot iron on my breasts, threatening to kill me if I shout. As he lifted the iron, I saw that the flesh from my breast had stuck to the iron surface. Again he pressed it harder on my stomach, leaving it there. I managed to turn, only for the iron to land on my lap.
He told me there was no way of escape for me that night, that members of his gang were outside to take my corpse to an unknown destination by the time he finished with me. At that point, I knew the end had come for me. I managed to shout out for help with all the strength in me but I could not.
At that point, he forcefully took Ebuka from the bed and went outside. I decided to go out because I did not know what he would do next when he came back. I cannot tell how I crawled out of the room. But I found myself in the kitchen naked, from where two men who saw me gave me wrapper to cover myself.
“As I was there, trying to fathom how I would escape from the compound, somebody shouted that my husband had killed my child. That was the last thing I heard. I guessed I passed out because I later opened my eyes and found myself in the hospital.”
Residents of Number 3, Lambe street, Ago confirmed to Crime Guard that they simply refused to go to Mary’s rescue that night because it was late and also that her shout for help had been one too many .
One of them said, “ Since they started living as husband and wife, there had never been a time we did not experience shout or crisis from their one-room apartment. It is worse any time the man came home drunk. We have even gone to report to the police when it became too much because we did not want a situation where he would kill her one day and we would be held responsible. Even at that, he did not stop.
“Several times, the woman had wanted to go back to her family but she wouldn’t. Even her father-in-law had advised her to leave when she travelled home last December because he was tired of the endless reports of his son battering his daughter in-law.”
Weeping, after pausing for a while, Mary recalled how he met her 37-year-old husband. “ We knew each other since 1996. The relationship blossomed until 2010, when he went for introduction in my village. I left my hair dressing skill and moved in with him with the hope of continuing later.”
But that was never to be as she revealed that rather than continuing learning hair dressing, she started selling pap, all in a bid to make ends meet and apparently as a demonstration of her love for Henry.
“He started showing his real colour later. He started by refusing to drop money for house keep and even when I begged him to rent a shop for me, he didn’t. Rather, he used the money to drink beer and smoke . When I advised him against his drinking and smoking habit, he would flare up and the next thing would be to hit me. Several times I have begged the police to help me beg him not to raise his hands on me but he wouldn’t”