So I’ve been away from this blog for a bit now, concentrating on the reason I came to Birmingham, and I’ve looked forward to writing for leisure again. I just didn’t think I would start with this horrific story.
Last week, Linda Ikeji published this story on her blog; it happened on the 16th of August, 2011. Five undergraduates of Abia State University filmed themselves gang raping a female student, and they put that video online. Why? They say she insulted them. Now I would love to join the rest of the world in discussing what part of hell has been reserved for these devils, but you know that already. I’d rather we discussed the issues this unfortunate incident has thrown up.
To start with, rape is wrong, there is no argument there. It is a crime against womanhood (or manhood), and is punishable by death in some quarters, jail time in some, and the loss of the offending appendage in others. I’m sure these men were aware that they were doing wrong, abi? What is scary is the confidence with which they made the video. A Yoruba proverb says that if a small child stands by the edge of a bush and challenges an adult to a duel, there will definitely be something or someone in the bush giving him confidence. Agree with that? So what do these boys have ‘behind’ them? Though I haven’t seen the video (and have no plans to torture myself that way), it was obviously well planned for the video to have lasted that long. Is it the thought that they’d never be caught, no thanks to the gaping holes in our policing and crime detection? Is it the thought that their parents are big enough to sway a judge if it came to that? Apart from the very active devil in them, what else was at work?
That leads up to my next point; are we ready for this ‘civilization’ we are clamoring for? I mean, if the best use of social media for UNDERGRADUATES (not people in kindergarten) is the distribution of sadistic criminal content then are we sure we shouldn’t be back in the dark ages? Isn’t it their mates making groundbreaking discoveries everywhere? And to think one of the devils has been identified as studying law!
More horrifying for me is the number of ‘helpless’ people who are begging to see the video. I say helpless because from their comments you can tell they can do nothing to help this situation; either in identifying the suspects or providing any support for the lady. So what on earth do you to watch the video for? I saw a particular comment on a blog that read ‘I’ve only seen the 10mins version. Please give us the link to the full one’. And that was the only thing the person said. Are you kidding me? I mean, it is obvious our sense of decency and morality has been raptured but have we lost our sensitivity too? Like I tweeted some nights ago, rape is not porn. If you need to fill a need in your life with that kind of content, Google hasn’t stopped accepting friend requests. Google! At least that will be in the privacy of wherever you reside, not exposing your freak nature on a blog!
Let’s talk to our leadership a bit now. Two days ago the Vice Chancellor of Abia State University was quick to issue a statement absolving the school of the crime. In his words, “this did not happen in my school” On the other hand, reports from the students say that not only do they believe this happened in their school, but it’s happened before and nothing was done about it! Dear Mr. VC, are you more interested in massaging your bit-sized ego than in calling for a proper investigation into the matter?
And for the Governor of the state, Dr. Theodore Orji who said it was the work of his political detractors, it is the people who voted you into power that I blame for the tragedy of you sitting in that office. On Monday the 19th of September, the Governor said he’d asked the VC to meet with him on Monday, I’m assuming it’d be Monday the 26th. Both statements have foolishness, insensitivity,and stark illiteracy smeared all over them. To the VC and Governor now, would you wait one week if it was your daughter? Would it boil down to politics and your ‘political detractors’ (whatever the hell that over used Nigerian phrase means) if your daughter was gang raped?
Finally, where is this lady? This daughter of God who was brutally violated by our brothers, boyfriends, potential husbands and fathers. Where is she now? What support is she receiving? Do we have any centers to cater to people like her? Does anyone know how to get across to her, to comfort and be there for her and her family? Or are we waiting till she commits suicide to mount campaigns on Twitter?
That said, I appreciate the massive campaigns that have gone on Twitter, the pot of money put together by young people as a reward for any information leading to the arrest of these devils; I am grateful for Sugabelly’s work in deciphering their names, and I’m excited about the Minister for Youth Development leading a team to the school next week. I just hope it won’t end up being a courtesy call! To everyone speaking up about this, well done! We won’t stop till we get these bastards because believe me, with this incident, our problems as a nation are bigger than Boko Haram. This cookie has crumbled.
- Animals are ashamed of us!!!! (naijasmoothtalker.wordpress.com)