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Female Corp Member Gets Crippled By NYSC Camp Commandant In Anambra State

Culled from SunNews

In November 2012, Miss Mercy Okpithe reported to the Batch ‘C’ Orientation Camp of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Anambra State. Excited and looking forward to the opportunity to serve Nigeria for one year.

But little did Mercy know that four months later, fate would have no mercy on her.

Mercy, it was gathered, was severely beaten up by the Camp Commandant at the NYSC Orientation Camp, one Captain S.O. Beke, about 11:00p.m on Monday, March 18, this year.
She allegedly fainted and was rushed to the camp clinic.

The following day, she was transferred to the Anambra State University Teaching Hospital, Awka where she was diagnosed with dislocation of coccyx, a small triangular bone at the base of the spinal column.

The hospital further referred her to the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi, Lagos, for special attention. It was gathered that she might be flown abroad for surgery.

But what could have led to the alleged brutalisation?

This correspondent visited Mercy in her Lagos home. As she lay down on a couch in their living room, the young lady writhed in pains, even as she struggled to answer the reporter’s questions.

Her words:

“When the Batch A corps members were in the Orientation Camp in March, this year, the NYSC officials invited members of the Dance Troupe to the camp to teach the new corps members how to dance. We got to the camp in the evening of Sunday, March 17. 

We were 15 all together; 11 boys and four girls. We girls were not meant to stay together in the same room with the boys. But we had to because there was no vacant room. The following morning, the NYSC State Coordinator gave a directive that a separate room should be given to the girls. But the officials could not find a vacant room for us. 

So, they put us in one of the rooms occupied by some Batch ‘A’ female corps members. “We took two mattresses each to the place. There were no bunks. So, we spread the mattresses on the ground. Thereafter, the other three girls slept but I was still awake. I was listening to music on my phone, using an earpiece. 

Around 11:00p.m., some soldiers came into the room. They were both males and females. I felt it was a normal thing because they did the same thing when I was in the camp for orientation exercise in November 2012. Then, I noticed that a female soldier was arguing with one of my friends, Ifedayo Fakehinde. 

Then, the female soldier forcefully removed one of the mattresses which she slept on. Ifedayo sought to know her offence and the soldier hit her. I quickly rose up and caught her as she was falling. Otherwise, she would have hit her head against the wall. But she sprained her hand.  

The incident caused a scene. Many corps members came out and argued with the soldiers. As this was going on, Ifedayo was crying. We calmed her down. 

Then, the NYSC Schedule Officer came around. He sought to know what happened. As I was explaining what I knew about the incident to him, I heard the voice of the Camp Commandant telling all the corps members to go inside. Before I finished my explanation, the commandant came and pushed me. I sought to know why he pushed me. But he pushed me again. 

I told him to stop pushing me because he could not push his sister like that. But he continued until he pushed me to the wall. Then, he kicked me from the ground and I hit the ground with my back. I couldn’t move. Then, I heard other soldiers saying ‘die, die, die’ till I passed out. 

 As gathered, the Schedule Officer ran probably to call the State Coordinator, Mrs. I.B. Ekpe, when the commandant was purportedly beating the corps member.

But Mercy woke up at the camp clinic the following morning with excruciating pains.
Later that day, she was transferred to the Anambra State University Teaching Hospital, Awka.

Mr. Solomon Okpithe, Mercy’s father, said an official of the NYSC called him on phone in the afternoon of Tuesday, March 19, telling him that Mercy was involved in an accident and that he should come to Awka immediately.
The official, he disclosed, told him to come with somebody who would stay in the teaching hospital to take care of Mercy.

When he got to the hospital with his wife at about 12:30p.m the following day, they were shocked to hear that she was brutalised by the camp commandant.
Okpithe said the first thing that came to his mind was how to save his daughter’s life. He sought to see the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the teaching hospital but could not see him until about 7:00p.m when he came out from the theatre.

“I asked the CMD about my daughter’s condition, but he said the hospital could not handle it and he would refer her to Enugu. I told him that I was from Lagos and asked if he could refer her to any hospital in Lagos. Then, he said he would refer her to Igbobi. Immediately, he instructed the doctor that was in charge to write the letter.

“On Thursday morning, we were at Igbobi. The doctors at the hospital tried but the sad thing is that they told us they could not handle it too. They said it’s not just an orthopaedic case but something that has to do with the spine. They treated her and asked us to take her home. Then, they gave an appointment,” he said.

On the next appointment day, according to Okpithe, the hospital said the first option, which was the treatment by orthopaedic doctors, had failed.
 “They said they were taking another option now and if it fails, the third option would be a surgery.”

Okpithe, who has since been responsible for his daughter’s hospital bills, disclosed that Mrs. Ekpe promised the family that NYSC would reinburse whatever amount spent on the treatment, adding that Ekpe said she had informed the national secretariat of NYSC in Abuja about the development and had also written a letter to the NYSC in Lagos State about the incident.

“I have received calls from one Mrs. Daniel from the NYSC Office, Lagos, telling me I should accept their sympathy on my daughter. But on the other hand, Mrs Ekpe never stated the cause of the dislocation. I know she’s doing that to protect the officer.” Okpithe, an engineer, urged the Chief of Army Staff to ensure proper reform of the army, especially those in charge of NYSC.

He also advised the Federal Government to provide necessary items for corps members on the camp. The issue of inadequate mattresses, he said, caused the problem. When contacted on phone to react to the claims, Captain Beke neither confirmed nor denied the incident.

He only asked if the story would be published in Daily Sun, and when the reporter answered in the affirmative, the officer paused and said he would call back. But he never did. Further efforts to reach him failed as the phone was switched off.

When the reporter was eventually through to him, Captain Beke directed the correspondent to contact NYSC for any comment. “I am not NYSC,” he asserted.



  1. Vanessa

    July 4, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    One of the billion reasons scrapping nysc is long overdue.
    May God grant her a speedy recovery and justice.

  2. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    FROM AN Anonymous TO D Ladies
    Ladies beware of the owner of this bb pin 267D2992. He is into money making rituals… He gave me a ride at isolo and drugged me. I used my last strength to scream for help when he stopped at a petrol station to buy fuel.. He pushed me out of the car and sped off. Ladies beware. His name is Godspower ahaneku and he claims to be from Imo State.Note: avoid free rids pls Rebroadcast

  3. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    The way those people treat civilians at times I wonder if they are human beings…I wish her fast recovery

  4. Anwuli Oputa

    July 4, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    I pray she gets well soon and justice must be served.

  5. Austin Uche

    July 4, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    i cldnt agree more….. And a big amen to dah prayer

  6. Oluyomi Odukoya

    July 4, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    What did I just read?? OMG..

  7. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    Indeed strange things are happening.


    July 4, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    The soldiers had just finished smoking india hemp.

  9. chique

    July 4, 2013 at 6:00 pm

    nice blog. my first time here'

  10. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    God save us from military brutality.

  11. adeniyi opemipo

    July 4, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    this is wickedness . .
    click HERE for more gist

  12. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    If she was to be my sister d so called solder would have been 6 fit below the ground

  13. Gazzy

    July 4, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    Haba pls let her parents take dis up demselves let dem com to abj @ NYSC HQ and lay dia complaint and also @ Army HQ honestly its nt a difficult tin to do if it doesn't work let dem get a good lawyer to do d job for dem its as simple as dat I tell u..if she is my sis I won't let it be like dat…#nonesense#

  14. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    They commandant all involved must be made to face the music they have started

  15. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    I expected d father of d victim to have taken a legal action against d wicked officer n NYSC. As long as pple keep quiet in this kind of situation culprits go scotfree. It's well wt u Mercy Jehovah Rapha wl heal u in Jesus name

  16. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    Legal action now what are they waiting for? On the other hand i would not argue or fight with a military person in Nigeria whether on NYSC CAMP or on the road. It is indeed fool hardy trying to do that. Lady it is well with you o

  17. creamysugar

    July 4, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    This story just brought endless tears to my eyes
    This commandant and the female soldier that instigated the issue shall never know peace love harmony and any good fins in life

    They shall suffer and no one will ever come to their aid they shall die a slow and painful death for inflicting such pain to a young promising girl over a trivial issue

    The government should regulate the way devils in military regalia treat d common civilian

    May God almighty grant her a speedy recovery in Jesus name Amen

  18. Anonymous

    July 4, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    its OGEY…Mr Ekpe no gree abeg just VEX dis vex scatter things dont temper Justice wîth mercy abeg dis is Wickdness na.

  19. Dating Blog(Sweetest Baby)

    July 5, 2013 at 8:38 am

    May God be wit u Mercy

  20. Anonymous

    July 5, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    Amen!!! They are agents of the devil who wanted to terminate the glory of the girl. But they have failed! The "demonic" soldiers must pay!!!

  21. Ayodeji Micheal Ayibiowu

    July 5, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    That is too bad

  22. Deekay

    July 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    They should be made to pay for their crime. So unfair!! Poor woman.

    Don't know why Nigerians in authority go power mad and cannot accept criticism smh! Like they're above the law. KMT!

  23. Anonymous

    July 24, 2013 at 5:58 am

    This is soo pathetic. May the good God heal U̶̲̥̅̊ ♍v̶̲̥̅ ϑξa̶̲̥̅̊r. It is well wit U̶̲̥̅̊.they should please take dis up.don't temper justice wit mercy at all.

  24. Anonymous

    July 24, 2013 at 6:19 am

    Wen i heard from friends i didnt blv it untill now.i am a classmate of mercys' a pol sci grad of AAUA. Its foolhard aurgueing wif a military officer frm her narrations she has her own faults one we all complain abt nig nt moving forward some people use 2matrrasses wen some myt not even av one also didnt d bibble say obedient is better dat sacrifice?if u had moved in as instructed….am sure u wudnt b going tru dis pains…buh dats not enof reason for anyone to beat you to dis stage on behalf of AAUA pol. Sci 2010/2011 set i wish a quick recovery nd i will try nd see dat justice takes place.greatest homo politikos!!!

  25. Hip Replacement Surgeon

    September 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    Thanks designed for sharing such a good thought article is nice thats why i have read it fully

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