Saturday, October 15, 2011

"My own husband splashed acid on me"

25 year-old Halira Hassan is a fair-complexioned, beautiful lady. But on Tuesday, September 20, she was bathed with acid, purportedly by her husband, Hassan Girgije in Gwada village, Shiroro local government area of Niger State. Narrating her ordeal to Weekly Trust, Halira, a mother of three said she never knew that her husband, with whom she has been having a running battle for the eight years that she has been with him, had a plan against her.

According to her, trouble started the day he sent her packing from her matrimonial home, after he accused her of going to his uncle’s house make nasty comments about his two other wives. She said as it was already late in the night, she was reluctant, therefore relocating from the inner room to the parlour. But when it became apparent that he was all-out for her that night, she decided to leave for her mother’s house.

Halira said after about a week, her husband sent one of her closest friends on a peace mission to pacify her with the promise that it was a mistake that would never be repeated. But Halira told her that trouble of this magnitude was too regular. She refused to go back. When it dawn on Girgije that the effort to get his wife to return was not yielding results, he re-strategized by going through her mother. Halira said her mother was reluctant, especially when he was threatening her daughter.

At about 1 am on the fateful night, when she came out along with her children to ease themselves, she suddenly saw her husband, climbing over the wall into the house. Even their little daughter recognised him and called “daddy, daddy.” Halira said: “After he realized that he had been recognized, he splashed the liquid, believed to be acid, on my face and threw away the container, from which some of the contents splashed on our little daughter, Hassana, who got slightly hurt.”

When the victim raised alarm, her mother came to her rescue, pouring water on her face. She said that the shout for help woke up residents and on narrating what happened, the youths went to her husband’s house to confirm whether he was at home. Upon reaching the house, he was met panting and sweating profusely. When he was asked whether he was the person who just visited his wife’s family house, he said that he was just coming back from Minna.

The victim was rushed to a nearby private clinic for prompt medical attention and by the following day she was transferred to the General Hospital, Minna, where she treated and discharged after spending 22 days in hospital. When Weekly Trust visited the mother of the victim, Malama Hajara in Gwada village, she said her son-in-law had been threatening her daughter. According to her, at one time, she had to complain to the District Head. She said her son-in-law was troublesome but she had never thought he would one day go this far.

Hassan Bello is Halira’s uncle. He told Weekly Trust that on the day that Girgije was to commit the crime, he was seen around the area in the evening. The case has been reported to the police, family sources said.


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