“How far do you want us to take this?” the Minister of Women Affairs was surprisingly a calm woman. In person, I thought she looked better than she did on television. Her question was one I did not know how to answer, so I looked at my mother for help.
“We would like the man to learn his lesson” my mother replied and the minister was happy with my mother’s answer. The first thing she asked me to do was to make an official report to the police and then she was going to take it from there.
I won’t lie, I was very scared but the thought of disappointing every other woman who has been sexually assaulted or abused kept nagging at me. I thought about all the women who were in a worse position than me and had no voice; I decided to do everything my mother and the minister asked of me. No turning back now. The meeting ended with the agreement to meet at a later time.
From the minister’s office we went straight to the police station to make an official report. To my very surprise it was a quick and easy process; I think the universe made it that way so that I wouldn’t back down, because when you have made an official complaint it is now a serious case.
It is now a civil case… a case of harassment. I am so grateful to have my mother there, she showed me how to be a strong woman; it is easy to shout up and down that you are a strong woman but it takes guts, making difficult decisions and taking actions to be a strong woman and that is what this thing is teaching me.
We notified the Minister that we had made the complaint and she informed us that the Nigerian police was going to first invite Mr. Adesiji in for questioning and if he cooperate then they can move forward from there but if he didn’t cooperate then she was going to make him a scape goat.
“My dear, I hope everything you have told me is true?” the minister asked with a very firm tone “yes ma it is all true”
“Okay good because if we conclude our investigation and we find out any part of this was a lie or a way for you to gain attention the law will come hard on you and I will make you and your mother pay for it” Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! What brought my mother into this? I thought; then my mind started running around the past week’s events like an antenna searching for channels just to make sure I did not exaggerate while telling the story.
I understand why she said what she said but the thing freaked me out; especially when she mentioned my mother, as if she knew that my mother was the one encouraging me every step of the way. “Everything I told you is the truth ma” I replied and the call ended. Now it was on.
These police people when they want to work enh, they work really fast. The next day Mr Adesiji and that his mean secretary where invited for questioning; his secretary went but he didn’t, exactly what I was afraid of. Do you know what he did instead? He called his good friend the DPO and asked him to close the case but unfortunately for them, they were dealing with a formidable minister.
The minister instead told the DPO to do his job or she takes it to federal level; but he didn’t listen. He kept persuading her to drop the case and even made the mistake of involving the Minister of the F.C.T. He thought the F.C.T Minister could use his power to make her drop the case but the opposite was the case.
Two days later, while in my room on my bed thinking about how lonely a broken heart was making me feel; I heard my mother scream my name. I ran to the living room and just as I got there, she pointed at the television and there was the shock of my life. Everything I was afraid of coming to pass.
The Minister of Women Affairs was holding a press conference about my case and exposing everything and everyone involved. The only thing she did well for me was not calling my name and her reason was that she was protecting my identity for the sake of my safety. But asides that she called out Mr. Adesiji and his friend the DPO.
When the press conference was over, my mother and I just sat there looking at each other like WTF! Just for my phone to start ringing “Hello” I answered
“Good Afternoon, is this Miss Asari?” “Yes” I replied
“My name is Mr. John Uche and I am calling from the office of the first lady, we would like to invite you for a meeting about your on-going predicament that was recently taken up by the minister of women affairs” my chin was heavy with shock and I just couldn’t answer
How could I answer? When I decided to rant on twitter, all I wanted was my money but I was getting more than I asked for. My heart was a minute away from exploding in my chest
“Asari, who just called?” My mother asked but the words were stock in my oesophagus afraid to come out.