This was her third knock on the door, Sarah is almost convinced there is nobody in the house. It’s getting late, she needs to leave now. Maybe come back another time.
But as she turns to take her leave, the door cracks open. “Hey.. Sarah, how are you?” “Uncle Bayo, I’m fine, good afternoon. I thought there was nobody in the house” “I was just busy jare.. Come inside”.
Sarah walks in but stood by the corner of the door. “You said I should come and collect my textbook today”. “Oh yea, sit down let me bring it for you. How is your mum?” “She is fine” Sarah replies as she takes her seat.
Uncle Bayo returned in two minutes with a glass cup and a bottle of Fanta.
“This should be the first time you are coming to my house, right? And you used to pass through my compound to school every day. If I didn’t borrow your textbook and ask you to come to my house and get it, you would never have come to my house” he says smiling subtly as he drops the drink and glass by a stool beside Sarah.
Then goes back and sits on a coach directly opposite the young girl.
“You didn’t bring the textbook, sir?”
“Oh yeah, I still have one chapter to cover”.
‘Uncle’ kept shaking his legs, resting both arms on the coach and smiling teeth to teeth. “Sarah…” He calls slowly, like someone trying to figure out how he will devour a very sumptuous meal.
Sarah gets up immediately to leave.
“Whenever you are done sir, please let me have it.” ‘Uncle’ gets up at once, walks closer towards her, “Haa! Sarah, why are you in a hurry? You haven’t even tasted your drink”.
He smiles, bending his face sheepishly as if trying to read her mind.
“Sarah the brilliant girl, sit down my dear and take your drink”. Sarah gave a bright smile. She likes it when people call her “Sarah the brilliant girl”.
She held her small purse tightly with both hands across her chest, feeling awkward with herself, but then she sits down.
“Should I serve you the drink?” Was the voice from “Uncle Bayo” “No sir, I will serve it myself”. She takes the bottle of Fanta to open it but discovered it was already opened. “Oh, I had to help you open it from inside with my opener” came the convincing words from uncle Bayo.
“Ok sir. Thank you”. Sarah picks the glass cup and pours some Fanta for herself.
‘Uncle’ keeps smiling at her with very grey eyes. “How do you always come out first position in Maths and English?”
Sarah is feeling shy again, but proud of herself. Now holding the drink with both hands. “I study very hard, sir” bending a corner of her eyes.
“That’s good! Go ahead, go ahead, take your drink”. Sarah lifts the drink to her mouth and there was a quick flash in her head as her eyes immediately caught the sharp eager glance on uncle’s face.
It was exactly like one she had seen before, ten years ago precisely.
She was only four years old then, her mum had rushed to the market that afternoon and left her in the care of her big cousin who at that time was staying with them. Big cousin had a visitor who after a few minutes was leaving. Big cousin needed to see her friend off.
Sarah wanted to go with them, but her cousin wouldn’t let her. “Go back inside, I am coming soon.”
As soon as they left, Uncle Sam, their neighbour at the back flat calls her; “Sarah!” Sarah runs towards him. “They are showing your favourite cartoon” he said as he opened the door for her to come in. Sarah rush inside and took her seat.
“Uncle Sam is very close to her mum and used to buy her chocolate and sweets every Sunday.
‘Uncle’ where is your wife? ‘Uncle’ smiled, “Sarah, she is not my wife, she is my sister”. Sarah later discovered she was his girlfriend, one of his girlfriends anyway.
“Okay, where is your sister?” “She is not at home” Sarah by now was fully focused on her cartoon.
Uncle Sam who has been sitting and watching cartoon too suddenly stood up, walks towards her and asked her to stand up. She did. He sat on the couch and ask her to sit on his laps. Sarah jumped on his lap even though in her heart actually prefers to sit on her own.
“Your gown is very fine, who bought it for you?” “My mummy, no my daddy. My daddy gave my mummy the money to buy it for me.”
“Oh, that’s very good. It is very fine. It is what fine girls like you wear”. Sarah was feeling shy but decided to focus on her cartoon, forming a very serious face.
In flipped seconds, like one possessed with demons, ‘uncle’ started pressing little Sarah’s breast. Sarah was so confused, she didn’t have words to understand or explain what was going on. He went down her little gown and starts to drag down her small pants. Sarah now is hesitant. But uncle is even more forceful with red desperate hungry eager eyes like the one presently on Uncle Bayo’s face which made her shivered then in fear.
Then, the voice came sharp and loud, “Sarah! Where are you?” Uncle pushed her away in shock, Sarah almost colliding with the TV didn’t mind but raced out of the room in fear and confusion.
She never had the voice nor words to explain that experience to anyone, only avoided ever going close to uncle Sam flat like a plaque until ‘uncle’ finally moved out of the compound six months later.
Would she also ever forget how papa Emma, her father very good friend in their street always winks at her, beckoning that she comes close wherever she passes through their compound alone.
Now, here she was with a glass full of Fanta, probably drugged or something. But wait, ‘Uncle Bayo’ is one of the best male teacher in their school, he has even won the award for most excellent teacher twice and is trusted and liked by many parents in the school. He is certainly not going to hurt her.
Sarah closed her eyes, and gulp down the full glass of Fanta! Uncle Bayo’s eyes sparked with light and victory. He stood up at once, starring passionately and crookedly on his latest conquered prey.
Sarah staggers to get up and say goodbye but falls right back on her seat.
Society, again, has failed another young girl.
She had spent fourteen years of her whole life fighting to protect herself. Guess she didn’t fight hard enough this time.
Before you lament another girl who for the rest of her life will bear the scar, pain, anguish and torment of rape! That’s if she survives.
Let me quickly remind you how you and many others have probably aided this sore menace allowing it deeply rooted in today’s world.
Whenever you try to prevent justice from prevailing because the rapist is your husband, your father, brother or friend, you have succeeded in building a society where rapist thrive.
Whenever you asked very unreasonable questions like “What was Sarah wearing?” “Why did she go to his house?” “What was she doing in his room” You are either a rapist or a strong supporter of rapist.
Whenever you turn a blind eye to an act of rape and act like it is non of your business. You are indirectly saying ride on rapist! Ride on!
Whenever, you see a little girl, teenager, or even a fully grown-up girl being sexually molested and harassed and you stand there and just laugh or worse even justify the act, you have failed Sarah and many other young Africa damsel who would have to suffer the consequences of your inactions!
Rapist rape because they are rapists!
Rapist rape because they know they will not be caught!
Rapist rape because they are aware their victims are vulnerable with no one to fight for them!
Rapist rape because even when they are caught, they are sure justice will not be served!
Rapist rape because they trust you. Yes! They know you will never say a word, lend your voice or fight for justice!
Rapist rape for all the reasons in hell, but certainly not what their victims did or did not do!!!
Before you argue that last sentence, let me ask you a question:
Imagine a very beautiful girl who is sexually dressed or even partly naked and she is walking down a very lonely street at about past 8pm, and there are two serial rapist hiding somewhere down the same street. Would she be raped?
Whatever your answer is, why?
Now imagine another scenario, the same very beautiful, sexually dressed girl walking down the same lonely street with two rapist hiding somewhere. But wait, this time, the girl is well armed; she has a pistol on and knows how to throw some very smart karat and eye bursting blow, there is lightening in the street now and CCTV camera everywhere. Would she be raped?
Again, whatever your answer is, why?
Now imagine this last one, the same very beautiful, seductively dressed girl, walking down the same dark and lonely street but this time, there are no rapists in the street. Maybe one or two morally upright guys, who would never hurt a fly nor forced a girl against her own will. Would this same girl be raped?
Your answers to these questions should already tell you why rapist rape. First, because they are rapists! Just as a thief steals not because the money or item are publicly displayed but because he is a thief!
Another reason is because society has failed the girl child. There are no securities nor guarantee for justice! Have we not almost all forgotten about Uwa? Are the perpetrators of the crime not still walking freely along our street?
Stop blaming the victims!
Stop supporting rapist, whether directly, indirectly or through your silence!
Speak out against rape and pedophiles!!
Report suspect and follow up making sure justice is served!
You could just be saving another girl child from going down. What do you think?
Every Friday on BeInspired Show