Domestic Violence: Another Osinachi-like-wrongful death narrowly averted in Yenagoa5 min read
Another Osinachi case nearly occurred one week before Osinachi Nwachukwu’s death.
Eculaw News gathered that on 30th March, 2022, Mr. Raymond Emeledor Oyinkuroh nearly killed his wife and children in a feat of domestic violence in their home in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State. One would wonder what led to this. In September, 2019, Mr. Emeledor Oyinkuroh file a petition for dissolution of the marriage between him and his wife, Mrs. Gloria Emeledor. The case was filed as Suit No: YHC/30D/2019.
Mr. Emeledor Eculaw News gathered cited the ground of desertion in his petition for divorce. Mrs. Emeledor countered that she never deserted her husband, that it was her husband that drove her away from their matrimonial home, and that she returned only when he allowed her to. She asked the court for alternative relief of judicial separation on the ground of cruelty and abuse she and her children had suffered in the hands of Mr. Emeledor.
By June 2021, Mrs. Emeledor was concerned that the case was not progressing well for her. She was constantly intimidated by her husband and his lawyer, E. M. Essien, Esquire, of E. M. Essien Partners. She feared that the scale was tilted against her and that she did not have strong enough support at such a critical time.
While this was going on, she approached The Due Process Advocates International Foundation (DPA) for help. DPA saw merit in her case and assigned a team of lawyers to take over her case. Hence, on 2nd July, 2021, an amended process was filed on behalf of Mrs. Emeledor. The game changed. The new team of lawyers amended the Cross Petition of Mrs. Emeledor to strengthen her position. Trial reopened and progressed to the finishing line.
On January 31, 2022, the court gave judgment in favour of Mrs. Emeledor, but not without some drama to follow. On the date the judgment was delivered neither Mrs. Emeledor nor her lawyer was in court. However, Mr. Raymond Emeledor was in court. After the court, Mr. Emeledor came to his wife and told her that the court ordered her and their three children to pack out of their house. On hearing this, Mrs. Emeledor and her lawyers assumed that the judgment was against them and they set their minds for appeal. However, when the copy of the judgment was made available, it was clear that the judgment was in favor of Mrs. Emeledor. The husband lied through his teeth when he claimed he won the case.
The presiding judge, Hon. Justice D. E. Adokeme, delivered Judgement in Mrs. Emeledor’s favour on 31st January 2022. The Court made the following orders:
a. A decree of Judicial Separation is granted reliving the parties from the obligation of cohabitation for a period of two years.
b. Custody of the three children of the marriage: shall remain with the Respondent/Cross-Petitioner and she shall remain with the children in the matrimonial home during the subsistence of the Judicial Separation Order.
c.The Petitioner, their father shall be responsible for their education and medical fees of the children and wife, having maintained the Respondent/Cross-Petitioner as a full time housewife without a means of livelihood.
d. The Petitioner shall allow the Respondent/Cross-Petitioner the use of the Lexus Jeep GX 470 2006 model which shall be used by her and the children during the period of the Judicial Separation.
e. The Petitioner shall pay the sum of N100,000.00 monthly for the feeding of the children, the Respondent/Cross-Petitioner and maintenance of the matrimonial home.
f. The Petitioner is further ordered to pay the sum of N50,000.00 quarterly for the clothing of the children of the marriage for the period of Judicial separation or he buys them when necessary.
It is clear from the orders of the court that Mr. Emeledor is to vacate their matrimonial home as the order specifically gave the home exclusively to Mrs. Emeledor. Also, the court gave custody to Mrs. Emeledor, which would not have been if the court intended Mr. Emeledor to remain in the matrimonial home. But above all, the court specifically stated that the parties should not cohabit.
Eculaw News also gathered that Mr. Emeledor remained in the house and failed to comply with any of the orders of the court. Apparently, Mr. E. M. Essien, totally deflated by the fact that they lost a case they had felt so sure they would win, decided to mislead his client as to the meaning of the order and the outcome of trial. He somehow managed to convince Mr. Emeledor that the judgment was in his favor, that his wife was to move out or that at the very worst, he was to remain in the same house.
When after two months, it became clear that Mr. Emeledor had no intention of complying with the orders of the court, DPA reached out to him and his lawyer, demanding compliance with the orders of the court. When Mr. Emeledor remained adamant, DPA had to send him a letter on March 30, pointing out the meaning of the orders of the court and demanding compliance. That was the trigger Mr. Emeledor was waiting for to take vengeance out on his wife for winning the case against him.
In the night of 30th of March, 2022, Mr. Emeledor unleashed havoc on his wife and children. He attacked them viciously with a death wish. The video recording of the assault on his wife and children leaves a chilling evidence of a man in a murderous rage who could not distinguish between his wife and the young innocent children, whom he viciously attacked like a wild animal. On the video, Mr. Emeledor could be heard threatening to kill his wife and the children screaming as he beat the daylight out of them. Apparently, Emeledor was supported by his lawyer, Otherwise, his conduct would have been discouraged by his lawyer.
In addition to his stubborn refusal to obey court order, Mr. Emeledor has been aggressively trying to sell off the matrimonial properties in the hope that by the time divorce would be filed in the future, there would be no family property remaining.
To put an end to all this and to keep this woman and her children alive, DPA provided additional support to Mrs. Emeledor. Her lawyers have now filed or will be filing soon a petition for divorce while initiating contempt proceedings against Mr. Emeledor.
Also, in view of his threats to kill his wife and children, the police according to DPA have been or shall be put on notice.