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SOME DAYS WE WAIT

It is another day on field as a first responder. We are working on an existing case. It’s a case of a minor who was raped by her uncle. This case has been going on for a while now and as usual justice is very slow and hardly forth coming. The victim who was previously taken care of in our shelter has been moved to the government shelter on their request.

Today, we are at the Police Command, the investigators on the case say they want to visit the crime scene. Not to be rude but for the umpteenth time. It is draining to see them go in circles with no progress but today we go again because every victim deserves justice.

We are at the Police Command as early as 10am. We check into the office that is investigating this case. They tell us that the victim is yet to arrive. We ask if they could call the shelter to know when she would be here. They are reluctant and brush off our request. They tell us to wait outside until the victim arrives. We step out of the office to avoid any form of abuse as their countenance doesn’t seem friendly.

We are outside the office now. There is no waiting area, no chairs just a narrow hall way that’s stuffy and has a peculiar smell to it. We stand outside the office waiting for the victim to arrive from the government’s shelter. We have no idea where they are, if they have left the shelter or if they are even getting ready at all.

Its 12pm, we have been standing for two hours now and there is still no sight of the victim. We go back into the office to make inquiries again and remind them we are still waiting. We are allowed to see the head of the office and she too doesn’t seem to care much about our wait. We ask her if she could call the department in charge of transporting the victim and in her words she said me I don’t want to disturb them o they might even be on another assignment sef. We excused ourselves from the office on her request for us to keep waiting. I’m battling with a mixed emotions of anger and disappointment.

Why?

Why did you schedule a meeting if you knew you wouldn’t be available?

We are back in the hall way. We are exhausted from standing for hours. We spot a table at the edge of the staircase and proceed to sit on it. We are there when an officer and a client approach the table. They are discussing a case of fraud. From what I can gather the man was defrauded 2 million naira. The officer was requesting him to pay a sum of 30 thousand naira for some documents to be processed and the client was very angry. He didn’t hesitate to share his story of how much has gone into the force and yet there is no sight of his money. Soon the police man and his client left and we were left to wait.

Time went by and so did everyone. We sat there and watched as people walked in and out of different offices trying to solve different problems. Soon we were approached by some men who claimed to be officers, they scolded us for sitting on “their” table. We stood up immediately to avoid any form of embarrassment. We resumed back to our standing and waiting.

By 5pm, the police inspector in charge of the case saw that we were still waiting. She advised that we drop our contact and leave. She promised she would contact us as soon as the victim arrives. We agreed to this terms and said our goodbyes.

Tomorrow we will wait again

Some days we wait

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