On Saturday, 10th July, 2021, Keren-Happuch Aondodoo Akpagher was laid to rest at her parents’ country home, Tse-Tagesa Akpagher, Gboko Local Government Area, Benue State.
The 14-year old was the third out of four and the only girl. She died on 22nd June, 2021, from sepsis.
Aondodoo, a Premiere Academy Lugbe, FCT student died after she was “brutally raped” and “sodomised.”
“I missed my daughter dearly. She is the third out of four and the only daughter. I used to call her my princess,” Aondodoo’s father Raphael Akpagher said, giving way to tears.
Her death sparked protest in the nation’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja. The family and coalition of Civil Society Organisations are demanding for justice for her demise. Many think the school failed in their responsibility.
A coalition of Gender Based Violence (GBV) Responders told journalists prior to a protest in Abuja on Friday, 9th July, 2021 that autopsy report revealed that the teenager “had not only been brutally raped but also sodomised.
“She reportedly died from an infection stemming from a condom that was surreptitiously abandoned in her body by the rapist.”
Keren’s mum Vivien Akpagher, insists her daughter was raped in the said school, leading to an infection that causes sepsis and her daughter’s eventual death.
The school has denied committing any wrong.
Cathedral Administrator Makurdi Catholic Diocese, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Abela, took the reading for the funeral service in the Bible book of John 14: 2.
Rev. Fr. Tagesa Akpagher, twin brother of the deceased’s father said the choice of the Bible reading was deliberate to console those who are grieving due to the demise of Aondodoo.
He reasoned that since every life has purpose, the case of Aondodoo may have happened so that others will escape from same.
While describing as “painful, disappointing and annoying” the way her life was cut short, Fr. Akpagher reckon the truth about her death will always come up.
“She bears the name Happuch, after one of the daughters of Job, who was steadfast and kept faith with God. Aondodoo was a promising child,” the priest said adding that her “mission was to protect other children.”
He prayed God will rest Aondodoo’s soul. He similarly prayed God to console her parents who are grieving and give wisdom to those who are seeking justice for the sake of Aondodoo.
It was tears and anguish as she was laid to rest.
Credit Ukan Kurugh