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Now that there’s a bit of sanity in the country…

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…here’s what I have to say on the overflogged rape allegations saga.

Frank-Radical Amandi

I have tried so hard to shield my self from giving time to the kind of issues that attract the attention of Nigerians these days especially young people in the social media space, since last week all attention was diverted to an allegation from wife of inspirational singer Timi Dakolo accusing a certain Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo of raping her as a minor close to two decades ago.

I’m happy I never sampled any opinion on this at the time others were and at the time many took sides for or against either of the parties to this, however my desire to have a rational society won’t let me keep this piece of my mind to myself because we all would want Issues concerning us to be rationally treated, it involved different parties today, it could involve you and I tomorrow.

I spared over 1 gigabytes of data to watch the story of Busola Dakolo where she narrated her story alleging that she was raped by Biodun Fatoyinbo of COZA, and I have this to say:

It is very wrong that when issues of this nature arise, we’re more interested in taking sides that getting to the root of the matter, rape is a heinous crime under our laws which the victim upon conviction shall be liable to imprisonment for life. When an offense is alleged to have been committed, What the society seeks is JUSTICE! Justice is three way traffic, we should be interested in Justice for the land (society) which has been desecrated, we should be interested in justice for the alleged victim who has been molested, we should finally be interested in justice for the accused who has been accused of such a heinous crime. Truth be told, very few persons ever thought of Justice in this direction, the justices I have enumerated above can only be achieved by approaching a court of law where the truth surrounding the whole story would be unraveled, instead of this, what we have are hash tags and online and physical protests. Even my lawyer friends are guilty of this, well, thank God not all lawyers will become judges but I pray we never find ourselves in a situation where only God knows if we’re saying the truth .

If someone has committed rape, I think the correct thing is the report the matter to the police for proper investigation and prosecution.. how come this story is being told on the media? How come the interest of the believers of one side of the story not justice but for the pastor to step down? Now look at it this way, telling this story on the media didn’t give justice to the society, to the victim not to the accused, neither did the pastor stepping down.. this leaves one begging the question, what is actually the interest? The pastor stepping down? Who did this satisfy?

Now, from the story itself I want to point out some salient factors that many people have failed to take into consideration,

The first is the driving force behind Busola’s decision to share this story, according to her, she shared this story because people were beginning to say all sorts of things about her and her husband due to a post he made few Month back! Did you think of that ? She didn’t just want the world to know that something happened years back rather she was trying to clear her name from things said about her which included ” that she was promiscuous, that she was living on church money, questioning the paternity of her children. Etc.” what do you think a woman in this situation would do? Won’t she tell any story available to clear her name?

I’m leaving these as questions for you to answer by yourselves because I’m not in a position to say what the truth is.

Looking at the story further, it’s filled with fallacies begging the question as to what was truly the relationship between the parties, according to Busola, prior to the first incident she narrated, this pastor never made any previous indecent advances at her until the fateful morning, wait, is it possible that someone would have such amorous desires about a person and never did or say anything even when he has the chance to? From the time he took you to a supermarket, to the time he took you the check out the church’s new site at wonder land, he never even told you he liked you nor tried to touch you breass.. but had the courage to just walk in your “Father’s House ” on a Monday morning, between 6:30 and 7:00 am ( when everyone is expected to still be at home) knocked on the door (obviously he knew his prey would be the one to answer the door) not saying a word, not even minding or asking who is at home, or asking to get a reassurance from you as to the safety of the environment, pushed you to a seat and had you( as a virgin) right inside your fathers sitting room while your sister was upstairs, according to Busola, she slapped one of her father’s drivers who looked at her “somehow ” when she was just 10.. but when her most cherished virginity was about to be taken at 16, her strength and boldness failed her, she didn’t struggle, even to scream! In her own father’s house! She may not have intended to fight after all, as if that wasn’t enough, he had the ambiance to go to his car, got a drink as a contraceptive (he obviously prepared well) which he emptied into your mouth and you swallowed all. Two days from then, you returned to the same church for mid week fellowship, and on the same day you were invited home by his nursing wife to help her, (wait a minute) how did the wife pick interest in you? Was it a conspiracy between both of them, which woman assist her husband procure a minor for him to abuse? According to you , she told the husband to allow you sleep on the same bed with her… in that case it wasn’t a conspiracy between them! Then there’s something between you and the wife! This may not be the first time of being in that house.

The second incident is even more alarming, “that. A man who took your virginity few days back drove you to a lonely path and positioned you in doggie style position, and yet again, you didn’t resist or scream! Permit me to be a little raw here, I’ve never heard that anyone was raped in this sex position (doggie) if you have please let me know. And after that, you pulled up your pants, entered the same vehicle and he took you home.

Now, there maybe truths and holes in this story which I’m not in a position to ascertain, however, if a sexual relationship existed between these two, was it really rape, but for the age limitations if proven?

Not to be judgemental here, they may have had things which you and I are not fully in the known of, it may or may not have been rape, many of may be guilty of same even without knowing it, as a lawyer, rape is so complex that it’s web may catch you even with you feeling that you’re safe, apart from the age issue, we live in a society where it is almost generally agreed that women are raised never to consent expressly to sexual intercourse , it’s either she keeps mute and even when she hesitates, on a lighter note, it’s said that her no means yes, she wants you to try harder, it’s her pride and she doesn’t want to be seen as cheap, but the truth is that silence is not consent, legally we may have all committed rape thinking in this way. It may not have been as gory as it sounds but may have still been rape, he may not have thought it to be rape (that’s if it happened)

But can this story be proven at this time? Why wait all these years? She claimed to have been in fear and was trying to save her family but also told us how she went to his house with her brother for a fight, it still doesn’t add up! Your family knew, he begged and obviously you forgave, what is really the interest in telling the story on the media after all these years? Why is the interest not Justice? Why are we not talking about bringing whoever is culpable to book but we’re talking about leading a seemingly new activism?

I hope in bid to answer these questions you may be pushed to inquire future.

This brings me to happenings in some Pentecostal churches which I have always had my reservations about, the way ladies take their so called men of “God” some throw themselves at them, one told me last time that she went to visit her pastor in his hotel room, I expressed my reservations and he returned my exact words to the pastor who happens to know me, he sent me texts pleading with me to stop spoiling his business, well, I thought it was the body of Christ, I never knew it was a personal business, those ones may come out tomorrow to also tell us of rape! Even in the Catholic Church, the way young girls and younger members of the CWO throw themselves at our priests, those that cook food and bring to the rectory what is actually your aim , some of them will also come up with their stories tomorrow.

But some of the so called men of God are actually filthy! Why not flee? Why get so close? What favour are you buying? A friend of mine told me some days back that the same way this story sounds may be how he’s will also sound if he had come up to tell how he was nearly molested by a priest as a child, I believed him, I went to an all boys secondary school, I had such indecent advances but even without putting up a fight, my smartness was enough to keep me out of reach.

Well, my submission in all of these is that we should “use our heads ” in all situations!

Frank-Radical Amandi, a lawyer writes from Abuja, Nigeria

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