Rape is a serious case in Nigeria but we seldom talk about it, victims don’t report due to costs of involving the police or even the fact that victims likely to be shamed for reporting.
Mrs Michale Matthew in Lagos is one of those aunties that we all need close to us. The kind of aunty who perhaps have read enough about rape to know that preventing it happening is the best gift one can give to young girls. She bravely stopped a group of secondary school boys from raping their female classmates in broad day light.
The story goes that Mrs Matthew was just leaving her office with her son while she noticed the commotion around her workplace, after enquiry she was told that the group were there making noise ready to take turns raping their mates in broad day light – where is the pride in that?
Mrs Matthew being a good Naija Aunty could not bear the thought of just ‘minding her own business’ because as I also believe, it is all our business to set good example. Anyway, she was appalled to see school kids just finishing their final exams breaking laws with no concern about possibility of any consequences – those who were not participating are busy filming the ‘show’.
In the article, we can see the girl’s skirt already torn. Apparently, this rape has been going on for a while as of right of passage after final exam.
Not only did Mrs Matthew foiled this criminal act, she also led the girls to the bus stop so they are safe to return home. She also collected enough information about these guys, follows through with reporting them to the police.
A few of the boys have now been arrested and are helping to smoke out others. The original post on this incidence as narrated by Mrs Mathew is something that would make any parent shiver a little. While she was helping these girls, her own son was there witnessing her mother, going out of her way to prevent violence and rape – what a great way to show by example.
Rape in schools is not limited to Lagos alone, it is in all of our regions. A couple of weeks ago, an Osun University student was boasting about raping his female friend because she ‘wouldn’t let him’. A few people talked about this online but I doubt any arrest was made.
As citizens with no real power, we can only report and echo one another’s voices, it is the job of officials to investigate and bring criminals to book, if we ever want to see end to violence against women in our society.
Since Nigerians now celebrate both UK and USA Mother’s Day, the more the merrier I suppose – this is to Mrs Matthew for her courage and for being a good Nigerian Aunty!