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Widow cries for help, accuses late husband’s siblings of victimization

Mrs. Chinonye Okonkwo and other women at the event. | Image: Nweze Anaga

‘We want both the government and members of the public to intervene to serve as deterrent to others who may be planning similar actions on other widows’

By Nweze Anaga,

Abakaliki

A 37-year-old widow, Mrs Chinenye Okonkwo, has appealed to the Anambra State Government and human rights organisations to assist her in recovering her late husband’s property from his siblings.

Chinenye during a news conference on Saturday, alleged that her late husband’s siblings encroached into their land, carried the blocks for their proposed building and sent her and her five childre on exile.

She said that the Umuodilogu village kindred and the widows’ organisation under Sir Emeka Offor Foundation tried to settle the matter but to no avail.

“My late husband, Linus Okonkwo, showed me the boundary of his land before his death in 2017 at age of 45. He also molded blocks for a four-bedroom flat.

“But his siblings, Boniface and CY Okonkwo, are troublemakers. They sent me away; asking me to go remarry and they will consider my children when they are grown.

“They even threatened to kill me if they see me in the family compound. I’m currently living in a rented apartment with my kids. I’m struggling to pay both house rent and children’s school fees.

“I’m appealing to the state government and well-meaning Nigerians to help me

recover my late husband’s property from his siblings.”

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Also, Mrs Ogechi Izuka, the leader of the widows’ organization, said that they reported the matter to the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Awka,  and the culprits had been served papers.

“Unfortunately, our NGO, does not have the right to interfere in family affairs. There is a limit we can go. We can only resort to protest or demonstration if the matter is life threatening.

“We want both the government and members of the public to intervene to serve as deterrent to others who may be planning similar actions on other widows. We want this to be the last,” she said.

In his remarks, Mr Francis Okafor, the Chairman, Umuodilogu kindred, said that they frowned and strongly condemned actions of the widow’s brother-in-law.

“We have been trying to amicably resolve the matter in-house, but it escalated when Boniface and his team resorted to violence, the first of its kind in our kindred. “They even threatened to kill one of our kinsman for defending the widow,” he said.

valoa2000@yahoo.com

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