…As Police begin investigation

Abiodun OBA

The Lagos State Government has ordered the shutting down of Chrisland Schools in the State over the sexual violence case involving students of the school, which occurred in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The government in a statement said it is pertinent to note that all allegations were being investigated by the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, including Ministry of Education, Office of Education Quality Assurance, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Ministry of Justice and the Lagos State Domestic & Sexual Violence Agency, whilst the criminal allegations have been escalated to the Commissioner of Police.

“In view of the allegations, we are committed to ensuring that adequate medical and pscyho social support is provided.

“This is to reassure members of the public of the State Government’s commitment to safety and child protection, especially in ensuring that all child-centered institutions within the state, formulate and implement policies and systems that are compliant with the Executive Order (NO.EO/AA08 of 2016), Lagos State Safeguarding and Child Protection Program.

“We also use this medium to remind the general public that any person who engages in any visual depiction of sexually explicit conduct involving a child, commits an offence and is liable to custodial sentence of fourteen (14) years. This includes “producing, distributing, receiving, or possessing an image of child pornography”.

“In the meantime, all Chrisland Schools within Lagos State are hereby closed, pending further investigations,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, the Lagos State Police Command has begun investigation into an alleged rape video purportedly depicting students of Chrisland School, Lagos, going viral on social media.

Commissioner of Police, Lagos State, Abiodun Alabi, in a statement said the Command has begun investigations into the matter with a view to establishing the identities of the players in the video and the true incident in the video.

Alabi, in the statement, issued by SP Benjamin Hundeyin, Command’s spokesman, said the police is also investigating the video to know the geographical location of the incident, the alleged threat to life against a student of the school and circumstances surrounding the alleged repeated pregnancy tests conducted on a student without parental consent.

“The Command is equally taking cognizance of the cybercrime angle to the whole episode and would not hesitate to enlist the support of the Interpol should the need arise.

“For a holistic and unbiased investigation, the Command shall be working with relevant ministries, departments, agencies and non-governmental organizations,” he said.

Alabi assured that due diligence would be observed to ensure that there is no miscarriage of justice.

Recall that the woman claiming to be the mother of a 10-year-old Chrisland School pupil allegedly raped during a school trip to Dubai has accused the school of threatening to kill the girl if “she speaks out.

In a video circulating on social media, the woman said: “They have been threatening my daughter that if she speaks out, they are going to kill her; that it is men’s world that she should keep quiet, she shouldn’t disclose to me”.

“About a month ago, I was on my way out of Lagos. So, I got a call from Mrs. Azike, the headteacher from Chrisland; she called me (to say) that she needed to see me. I said I would come when I returned, and two days later, I came to the school. When I got to the school, I met her with two other women in her office,” the woman explained.

She added, “They wanted me to know my daughter, whom I left in their care that they took to Dubai, kissed a boy, and the boy kissed her, and they found out that they got that kissing thing from ‘truth and dare’, which I said I would curtail her. They said (what) they wanted me to do is to take her phone so they won’t continue practicing that, and I said OK.”

Some weeks later, the school’s principal Georgie Azike invited her to a Zoom meeting, she disclosed.

At the meeting, “Mr Akin, the meeting host, preached forgiveness,” noting that she was confused about the message.

According to her, she did not know about the alleged rape until another parent showed a video of her daughter engaging in sexual acts with her schoolmates.

“So please, I’m begging Nigeria to help me because Chrisland was trying to hide this issue.

They were trying to push us out of the way, and my daughter was psychologically insane,” she said. “Please, I need help as a mother. I’m begging fellow Nigerians to help me. The part that Chrisland played to cover up this rape issue.”

She also accused the 10-year-old’s class teacher of verbally abusing the girl, describing her as “a stupid and useless girl in the midst of other students.”

After she and her husband confronted Chrisland School’s management with evidence, the woman alleged their daughter was subsequently suspended.

“They took her to do a pregnancy test without the father knowing and lied to us that they were taking her for a Covid test. Because we have started confronting them, they sent her suspension letter,” she lamented.

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