A UK-based Nigerian lady has taken to Facebook to call out a Naval Commodore, Gbenga Fahad Oladipo for allegedly raping her 37 years ago.
According to the woman who goes by the name Abi Idowu, the incident happened when she was 5 years old.
On the 3rd of this month, when my father would have been 80. I shared my truth about my experiences with molestation and rape from a young age. I shared this because the weight of the after effects of these experiences was sucking the life out of me, what was left of my soul was collapsing and I needed to be free. I honestly expected a backlash mainly because of the way I had seen people react to accounts of others but it didn’t deter me because I was the one whose soul was dying and I needed to be free.
Above all, under the advice of my therapists, there was the faint hope that I would be contacted by either my molesters or their family so that maybe we could open the door of dialogue and hopefully healing would start. I never wanted payment (I would never touch à dîme from those men). I just wanted them to know what their actions had stolen from me. My childhood, an identity I will never know. Normal reactions in the relationships I found myself in.
However, while I got a lot of support, encouragement, (and I thank every single one of you, be blessed always), confessions (from other survivors who cannot tell their stories but found a connection in the telling of mine) and of course some insults, nonchalance and unkindness. I got nothing from my molesters or their family. Even their sister who had been my friend and had gone to the same school with me and was in the same WhatsApp group, pretended not to have heard or seen anything.
So tonight, for the last time, I’m concluding my story. I’m laying my burden down. I’m choosing to try and live life differently, away from under the burden of shame I’ve lived with for 37 years. I’m choosing not to worry about who recognises me in the street, who is whispering about me. The label of shame I had believed was engraved on my head, the mark of easy prey I had believed was carved on my body from that night when I was 5 years old.
I’ve been told to forgive, to move on. Hmm, it’s easy to say so when I’m the one with the load on my shoulders. I can never articulate completely the shame, the deep deep shame I’ve lived with all these years. Yes, I’d come across as happy to many but it was a mask I had worn for so long. It was a stiff, fragile happy that broke so very easily. But I’m taking one advice.
I’m moving on, but I’m passing my burden. On those who originally put it on my shoulders. Kayode apologised and he himself was somewhat of a victim, drawn into a wicked act by an older sibling who knew better but didn’t do it. So while I have his details (he actually lives in London here), it is the main culprit Bidemi, whose details I will share. I am sharing them because he has gone on in the world, pretending to be a better man but monsters like him who are in positions of power are very dangerous men. I fear to know what he’s done in all these years.
He’s changed his name to Gbenga Fahad Oladipo on Facebook. He’s a Naval Commodore, married to Morayo Fash-Oladipo (She’s also Oladipo Clara Morolayo), they don’t have children according to the source who found out all his details. He lives in Lagos. And here are his pictures. It took me a long time to summon the courage to even look at them. I didn’t know that I could still be terrified by the thought of seeing him but I’ve faced my demon and identified him.
There’s no court I can take him to, there’s no retribution he can pay to make up for 37 years of slavery to the memories and effects of the theft of my childhood. If he wants to take me to court, I’m here. I’ve got witnesses.
But if all the retribution I get is that he walks around wondering if he’s the one being whispered about; that he wonders if the label ‘rapist’, ‘paedo’, ‘evil’ is carved on his face and people can see it as soon as he walks into a place; that he spends his years watching his relationships be affected by his actions; actions, I had kept hidden for him all these years.
That he sees his friends send their young daughters away as soon as he arrives, that they draw their children closer from him, that they don’t leave him alone with their children. The same with his wife, his siblings. That he knows that every child he’s come in contact with will be questioned intently by their parents. Then it’s enough. I actually feel sorry for his wife and with this, I have freed myself from him and everything he did to me.
So today. I lay this last burden down at the altar, where I began, 15 days after. I lay it all down and I won’t be looking back or down.
By Chika Prisca