A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Child Protection Network (CPN), has rescued a toddler named Destiny Kelvin, after she was allegedly set on fire by her uncle, Leo Ewa in Akampka Local Government Area of Cross River State.
Ewa has been arrested and is currently in police custody in Calabar. The girl’s parents have also been arrested.
According to Kebe Ikpi, the program manager of Basic Rights Counsel Initiative (BRCI), in whose custody the two-year old girl has been kept, she was reportedly tied to a guava tree and set on fire by her father's brother because she defecated around.
Ikpi said Destiny was undergoing treatment after she sustained high degree injuries which have made her unable to stand or sit.
Speaking further, Ikpi said the toddler’s uncle did not allow her sleep inside the house.
“She sleeps out in a makeshift bed not good enough even for a dog,” he said.
“As a result of the fire, she sustained high degree injuries. Her feet are burnt. She is not able to stand or sit. Apart from the injuries, she is looking malnourished and terribly underweight.
"She was rescued by Child Protection Network (CPN) in Akamkpa, and brought to Basic Rights Counsel Initiative (BRCI) in Calabar.
“She is currently undergoing treatment. The uncle has been arrested and BRCI will press for prosecution," he stated.
The Police Public Relations Officer for Cross River state command, Ms Irene Ugbo, confirmed the story.
Ugbo also confirmed that the father and mother of Destiny have been arrested and investigation on the matter was ongoing.
“The father of the girl is in our custody. The girl was brought in half dead but with the help of our Divisional Police Officer and welfare officer in the police, the baby was taken care of and she has recovered,” she said.
Cases of child abuse are rampant in the country and this led to the enactment of Child Right Act which is to protect children and it was domesticated in Cross River state during the tenure of Governor Liyel Imoke.