Finding Her Voice; Finding happiness.

FACTS YOU PROBABLY DON’T KNOW ABOUT NELSON MANDELA

You probably know that Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela is a South African legend fondly called Mkulu (grandfather) who made history and spent almost 27 years in prison fighting against apartheid in South Africa.
But do you also know these facts about the first democratically elected black president of South Africa –

  • He had a cameo appearance in Malcom X, a Spike Lee’s 1992 biopic movie as a school teacher in Soweto where he recites Malcom X’s ‘by any means necessary’. Madiba however refused to say the words ‘By any means necessary’ so as not to be misconstrued by the South African government. Lee had to cut the part and end the film with Malcom X’s footage of the delivery of the part.
  • Queer things named after Mandela. In addition to the numerous educational institutions, edifices, streets that have been named after him worldwide, Mandela has a woodpecker and a nuclear particle named after him. The Physics Institute at Leeds University christened a controversial nuclear particle ‘Mandela particle’ after the legend. Scientists also named a prehistoric woodpecker – Australopicus nelsonmandelai after him. Among other queer things named after him are a sea slug, a spider, tree, flower, racehorse, and a computer game.
  • Madiba was a professional at disguising. Due to his agitation activities, Madiba became a master of disguise in order to evade the authorities hunting him thus his nickname of ‘the black pimpernel’.
  • He loved eating the stomach lining of farm animals. Yes, Mandela was a fan of tripe – animal intestine was his favorite meal!
  • His name remained in the US terror watch until 10 years ago. Along with other members of the African National Congress, Mandela’s name was on the US terrorist watch till 2018 due to their quest for apartheid-free South Africa.

Even in death, Nelson Mandela still speaks.

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International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women 2018. #HearMeToo 16 Days of Activism

I don’t know about anywhere else, but the rate at which men are sexually molesting minors in Nigeria is alarming. It makes me wonder…

Could it be that there’s something suddenly spectacular about the little children’s private parts? Is there a scarcity of prostitutes? Maybe all the matured and willing ladies are now lesbians? I don’t understand it.

It has been a year of child molestation, from one gory incident to the other till the climax with the #JusticeForOchanya incident.

Ochanya’s father and son rapists

After the death of the little Ochanya as a result of protracted and consistent rape by father and son, the floodgates of child molestation were flung wide open.

From Benue state to Bayelsa state, from Lagos to Abuja, various cases of children being raped by teachers, neighbours and fathers abound, paedophiles everywhere.

My Issue with Caregivers

In the face of this appalling situation, some adults choose to live in a fool’s paradise while some remain careless and carefree. You read comments like ‘oh I know that guy and he is very responsible and religious’. As if that means anything these days.

Since I began my personal sensitization of parents and caregivers, it has dawned on me that lots of adults are naive and blind. I was trying to enlighten a mother of a sweet 2 year old girl, highliting it with instances of recent rape cases of minors, some younger than her daughter. Her response was that God will not allow any rapist to touch her daughter. Well, maybe God is too idle that He’d come down toclean the child’s nose on behalf of the mum. Or the molested kids are God’s arch enemies. What is wrong with her being more vigilant, or more enlightening?

What we fail to understand is that rapists are everywhere and can come in different facades, colors, status and profession. A pastor can be a rapist. A married man can be a rapist. The recent case in Bayelsa state is of a man with two wives and what my friend termed a ‘battalion of concubines’. Yet he was not satisfied.

Rapists are not necessarily vulgar, ugly momsters. They can actually be handsome, sweet, quiet and ‘responsible’. They can reside within your home, inside the school or in your place of worship.

The key is getting yourself enlightened so you can enlighten and protect your younger ones. There’s nothing wrong in teaching them about sex and rape, nothing wrong with equipping them to fight and speak up.

This is a case where prevention is definitely better than cure.

#SayNoToRape

Coping with directional dyslexia

All my life, I have had to personally devise ways of coping with directional dyslexia. I didn’t know what it was, (till recently of course) but I knew I had to deal with it since it wouldn’t go away, try as I may. I discussed my experience with this disability here.

Rather than risk getting lost and panicking, I will jot down the direction, pay serious attention to landmarks and signs. Of course, when all fails, I will ask people for directions. Most people are willing to help though sometimes, I end up more confused or lost from wrong directions.

Short term memory issues are also part of my directional dyslexia. I make up for that disability with writing. If I don’t want to forget instructions, ideas, thoughts, and every other important stuff, I jot them down immediately before they get lost.

To distinguish my left from my right, I demonstrate eating or writing knowing I mostly eat with my right hand. No, you won’t notice nor understand what I am doing because I’ve become a professional at the acting. I recently learnt that the hand where your wristwatch usually resides can be a pointer too.

I still have fear for driving, though GPS seems like a cold comfort. Not like I can make head or tail of maps.

I have given up on distinguishing east from west or north from south, unless of course I see the sun setting.

There are many other minor coping skills that come in handy as each occasion demands. I’m still learning too because the skills are never enough.

Being rid of directional dyslexia will beat all the coping skills. Maybe researchers can help save our souls.

13 Year Old Dies After Years of Rape By Father and Son #JusticeforOchanya

Little Ochanya gave up the ghost on 18th of October at Otukpo General Hospital after unsuccessful battle with VVF.

Cause of Ochanya’s VVF – Ochanya Elizabeth Ogbaje contracted VVF due to the incessant assault on her tender anus and vagina for more than 3 years. She was raped and sodomized from 8 years old when she came to live with her mother’s relative. At 13 years old, Ochanya eventually lost the battle.

The Culprits

Randy father and son rapists

Whatever name you give them, they deserve it. Mr. Andrew, 51, is a Senior Lecturer. His son Victor is a final year student. Both found an 8 year old body irresistible, they found her more alluring than all the beautiful tantalizing ladies around. The son began the raping game first but when his sister discovered it and reported to the family, the father, after paying lip servicw to the issue, joined his son. Together, they raped and ssodomized Ochanya for years, destroying her young organs in the process.

The Police arrested Mr. Lecturer earlier on, but for God knows why, he was released from custody. Not only was he released, he went right back to his lectures and his normal life. The son? No one seems to know his whereabouts.

OCHANYA –

Raped and sodomized to death at 13

In pursuit of education and better life, Ochanya left her village to live with her relatives – the rapists. According to her, her woes began when she was just 8. Both men took turns ravaging her.

Wondering why she didn’t seek help? If you have ever been a victim of rape, you wouldn’t wonder. Besides, the barbarians threatened her and on occasions, drugged her into submission. Despite all her tribulations, she continued with her education which the demons terminated at Junior Secondary class 1.

And Mrs Andrew?

Knight and Lady of St. Mulumba without conscience

Ochanya’s aunt, I kept wondering about her, wondering whether she was dead, insane or simply blind. But obviously, none of the above applies to her. I personally would love to hear from her. Like, ask her how she could turn a blind eye to such inhuman acts in her home. Was she watching while her men did it? Are they all perverts? What was she thinking? How could she keep mute in such disheartening and traumatic situation? Did she hate Ochanya that much?

The Nigerian Justice System – The Police arrested Mr. Randy lecturer. He was arraigned before a court, remanded in prison custody, refused bail, yet he was home and free, going about his normal business. How did he escape from custody when there was no bail and no prison break?

Randy undergraduate son was never arrested, never charged to court, not detained. How come he is invisible? Or maybe he is simply above the law.

My heart weeps for Ochanya, for all her unsown fields, for all her unfulfilled dreams. I weep for the childhood she was denied, for the trauma she underwent for years. I weep for her pains and trauma.

Will Ochanya’s death and suffering not be appeased? Will she be denied justice even in death? Will Nigeria fail her in life and in death?

I demand #JusticeForOchanya. That is the only way her death can be endured and appeased, only when the rapist family Pay for their inhuman treatment.

#JusticeForOchanya


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