NYSC Corper Severely Beaten By Orientation Camp Commandant Crippled

nysc corper beaten by commandant

July 4th, 2013 – NYSC Corper Severely Beaten By Orientation Camp Commandant In Anambra State Crippled

In November 2012, Miss Mercy Okpithe reported to the Batch ‘C’ Orientation Camp of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Anambra State. Her joy knew no bounds, as she looked forward to the opportunity to serve Nigeria for one year.

The 2011 graduate of Public Administration from the Adekunle Ajasin University, Ondo State, voluntarily joined the Dance Troupe on the camp.

Like Janet Jackson in her heyday, she displayed a high level of dexterity as she moved her feet and body rhythmically to music. After the camping exercise, she was posted to the Anambra South Local Government area, and she continued as a member of the Dance Troupe. 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. At the hospital, 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.

[Source: Daily Sun]

31 thoughts on “NYSC Corper Severely Beaten By Orientation Camp Commandant Crippled

  1. NYSC has outlived its purpose, therefore it should be scrapped. How on earth will soldiers be allowed to beat civilians, such act is barbaric and against natural justice. The Corp members have paid their due by going to educate themselves and I see no reason why they should be subjected to inhuman treatment at orientation camp.

  2. Captain Beke has the skill of kicking, yet we are looking for somebody who will kick Boko Haram members.

  3. that is too bad. the girl herself would have obeyed the commandant instruction by simply going inside. BEcause d matter doesnt concern her

  4. The parents of this young lady should as a matter of urgency consult a lawyer to commence legal proceedings against this camp commandant and NYSC.Enough of these brutalization in our country

  5. D officer is kinda lucky she’s nt my relatn I wld hv burn or bury him alive, poor girl wish u quick recovery

  6. Why should the treat corpers like that we are there to serve our fatherland not to be as military recruit. federal govt know what to do about this, may the Lord heal her in Jesus name Amen?

  7. that silly commandant should be dismissed and remanded in prison for the rest of his life alongside with anyone trying to cover this wicked act.

  8. The camp commandant beat up the lady becourse he has the power, then let him pay for his action, cos he also didt pray for such thing to happen to him or his sister any where, so let him dearly face the music.

  9. Those soldiers are animals……the commandant must be charged to court cos i witnessed such harrasment while serving too….they are used to harrassing ladies corper….Justice pls

  10. President Goodluck Jonathan must hear this. Women NGO must take action. This innocent girl must not be maimed by that mad commandant otherwise what happened in 1966 will repeat itself. Okpithe must be a Deltan and we will not allow this bragado and display of seven degree madness of the commandant to reign. Somebody should tell that commandant that you must touch the daughter of Ogiso of Igodomigodo and walk on mother earth.

  11. the so call commandant must be decissively dealt with. In fact he shud be withrown from the service. They can’t even fight with criminals. But when it comes to ordinary civilians they wil be demostratin vulnerable power. D f**kin idiot cannot even stand b4 boko haramite. If he think he is strong let him go 2 maidugeri and fight.

  12. For ur mind u think say u de above court marshalling abi, ds so called commandant Beke? U were so lucky that those corps members in dat particular hostel n around showed cowardice by not reacting. U de soldiers alws think u r superior dan civillians right? Don’t worry, if ds innocent girl doesn’t get kicking again, d spirit of d dead n living corps members wil hunt u to ur grave without any promotion further. Let watch n see, mtcheeewww!

  13. This should be checked and probed for further clarification, and fault culprits should be brought to book.

  14. May thunder fire the officer to piece. Useless Soldiers na defenceless civilian dem wan kill. Boko haram dey there dem no fit. mtcheww

  15. It is high time 4 govt 2 luk in2 dis issue of NYSC scheme. I suggest dat govt should put a stop 2 dis scheme owning 2 all its risks & problms dat out-weight its advantages. Aftr all our parents never pass 2ru dis NYSC, yet, dey re far beter dan us dat re said 2 hv undergone dis stupid militry dispilinary traininy.
    On Mary’s case, de idiot captain who cannt fight de boko haram should be bring 2 book. Else he is goin 2 do more worse things.

  16. This brutallity should be stop, how can a girl be torture simply because she went to serve her Father land after passing through series of harassment and sufferings from school lecturers etc. when did the NYSC converted to army for training in a deport? Did this useless commandant that cannot fight boko haram thinks that he has an autonomy of power simply because he is a soldier? Is it on this innocent beautiful girl that he will unleashed his frustration? This wicked man should be made to pay every penny spend on mercy from they day of the incident until she finally recuperated, and he should be dismiss from the service and be sentence to jail so that next time he will not be mistaking innocent civilians for boko haram. Mercy I wish you well and pray that the Lord Jesus will give you a good future.

  17. What can I say when I served some years back in adamawa stste, the camp commandant had a lot of girlfriends and he sleeps with them in his logde and they dare not say no…infact it was terrible even put a male corp member in a suckaway toilet pit(when I saw the boy I wept he was like devil )fences all over him…but why?some commamdants are very nice while some wicket…wondering why I said that I have worked with nysc for sometime and been to different camps…pls who can call them to order?

  18. Its only in Africa that things like this would slip by without anything being done. This is really sad and unfair.. A lady should not bE touched let alone beaten to pulp. I think that man should be responsible for her medical bill and other expenses. He didn’t even show any remorse .

  19. nonsense national service which do not attract any job after the whole programme.the commandant shld be dealt with

  20. Abeg make I hear word, that’s d problem wt we Nigerians, we would hear one side of the story $ start jumpin in2 conclusion.
    Every reasonable human being will understand d whole gamut.
    I presume, she’s one of those hot tempered, ill mannered gals,
    Before an officer could push you once, twice, thrice, and more, there would be a repetition of her nonchalant attitude.
    That is the reward of rudeness, she wasn’t well cultured and nurtured, I guess she’ll be in regret by now.
    By the way, the officer would have known the kind of person she is and left her to herself, bt who knows maybe she even injured herself.
    To me, I think She got Served.

  21. Ow on earth wit such act happens under d nose of d federal govt.itz verwie bad.if m nt mistaken itz an assault n against d law.d commandant dat did such act should b brought to book witout any trace of bias.

  22. I urge d family of mercy 2 go 2 d national Assembly n tender d case 4 proper hearing bcos,dis is a national issue,involving d rules of engagement,no whr in Constitution dat a soldier or camp commandant shld take laws of dehumanising of a corper,secondly,a lady who re fragile..NYSC,Captain Beke,NYSC DG,shld be made 2 pay 4 their SIN.

  23. Ohh mercy,I sincerlly feel ur pain,I paray for Gods healing.I left u in good health as I passed out from our wonderful PPA,to continue with d clarion call in awka,only2 hear dis sad story barely 1 month after passing out.it is we’ll with you.God will help us in dis country.

  24. Na wa o,this is bad.Why on earth should a camp commandant beat a civilian(a girl) without mercy,has he got no conscience?Soldiers i believe,are not meant to be heartless.

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