Fatima Ada Ishiaku is a graduate of sociology from the university of lagos, she was born in Kaduna State and her biological father is from Kebbi, her step father is from Kogi state, and her mother is from abia state.she is the founder and CEO of House of Fatima foundation, a foundation she dedicated for taking care of all the rape victims that comes her way.
My stepfather hailed from one the state in the middle belt of Nigeria he married my mother when i was still growing up as a little girl, at age five this man i refered to as dad took my innocence, my pride ,my virginity away from me at that tender age he made my mum to hate me for no reason i could not understand.
That added more pain to the emotion that comes with being raped and no one to talk to or run to and a failed support system to hold on to and help me understand what was happening, there was no one to assure me that all would eventually be fine. That person should have been my mother but she was not their for me.
I never forget the image of the one i called dad all over me muffling my screams with his palm over my mouth,
My step dad started abusing me from the 1980s we lived in the military base in barracks the session known as alasia its a one room apartment as earlier said demarcated by a curtain behind the curtain was the sleeping area for my parents it had their bed in it for the purposes of any form of privacy that is needed my younger once and myself we slept on a mattress on the floor before the demarcation because of the style of the abode, my step father would wait till my mum was conveniently far from home to have his way with me,we later moved to a different part of the barrcks known as the (CBQ) an apartment which has a room and a parlour my little bed in the living room sesion this bed was usually given to the military personels it was very small in size and can hardly take more then one person
So i slept alone on it almost every night, my stepfather would come and have sex with me while my mum was fast asleep in the bedroom,Quite often he had fell asleep on settee in living room session to gain access, i couldn’t fight a full able body man and i was petrified that if my mother was alerted he would kill her and kill me with his knife as he had threatened and over the move to our next accommodation was even worst it continued the torturous ordeal and different forms of abuse this time my mother would take her wares to the back of the building where there was better inflow of peoples to sell them to make some income,sold different types of items…..soft drinks and beverages,because she would usually be downstairs for a certain period of time stepfather would take advantage of my mum being at her business downstairs to rape me in our flat….when we moved to another building in the barracks it became worst also a mini flat but this time with a very big balcony more space i think this time i was ten years of age,anytime he send for me i would be so scared because i will feel he want to have sex with me which he does anyway.
Their was this very day he called me in and force himself on me i fought as hard as i could he later had his way on me with a vicious wrestle i was bruised and traumatised when he was done he made a statement that i will never forget he said to me that i should be happy he was having sex with me that am ugly and no man would ever want me.. he stated further that i stink and he is doing me a big favour,then drop his catch words of reminder of killing me and my mother.
This way i was brain washed that if i dared telling anyone of his actions with me he kept repeating the statement of killing my mother and myself if i try telling anyone i was manipulated for many years in the fear of being killed.
On another occasions in repulsion i fought so hard because i was fed up with the whole happening he beat me so badly that neighbors had to come,for my rescue. When my mother retuned he would lie against me that he caught me with a boy. immediately she would believe him, that same day my mum will beat Me so severely,i was bleeding from my mouth all through that day my mum will refuse to give me food and i will go to bed Hungary.
When my mum had left the house for her shop he said to me i will make your mother to hate you, my only option was to give myself to freely said my father from age eleven.
I began to fright back even more determinedly.
I grew up stubborn, i hardened up every now and then i would run away from home, i was so used to my mother beating me me and pouring hot chilling into my eyes and vagina .still when he was drunk i would overpower him and when his not drunk he could overpower me and i did have so many physical scars from those beating and struggles.. they used to be a sources of sadness for my mother but whenever he lied to about me she would beat me added her own share of scare and marks to those i already had on my fair skin.
Once my mother was admitted at the hospital for several days very sick. Her family had come to be with her taking tune to be by her bed side .i had to runaway from home because i known that her absence from home would mean more around of force sex and repeated scene being told how ugly i was,its get to a level in my life i began to hate myself.
I spend many night away from home in the house of some close friends within and outside the barracks till when i had my mum have discharge from the hospital felt its was safe to go home,especially because i heard had she been looking for me till date am not sure of what he must have told her, its was a cold reception she beat the day light out of me with all the strength she could gather shaved my head and broke my skull an iron rod again i still have the scars the remainder of the pain i had to go through in the hands my mother and her husband,she repeatedly wish me dead i began to doubt if she was my real biological mother. But i look so much like her i was an unhappy child, always sad.
I cried day and night i become rebellious when anyone mocked me or bullied me, I will fright that person fiercely, i was unable to cope with the injustice, i was already fourteen when the truth was exposed to me. from then i lost every form of fear of my stepfather and imoved to stay with an uncle of mine,my mum younger brother named tony, at that time he was not yet married i was well taken care of so i began to blossom into joy. I saw mum every day while i walk to school. Later my uncle tony got married, his wife was not just comfortable with my living with them but could not send me away because of the good relationship that existed between her husband and my mother and other members of the family,so when my mother died it was most convenient for me to leave i had to move back to the barracks,and also my younger once were alone, its our culture that when one parents dies we stay indoors to welcome visitors,its a period to mourn the dead, I had to cook for my younger once take care of their daily needs as he rape me again,he said to me your mother is no longer here to protect you and if you did not cooperate with me and let me have my way i will kill your younger once just like i killed your mother.
My mother’s corpse was still in the muntuary morgue at that time,i become scared all over again,thinking if i had not told my mother she wouldn’t have been killed, i didn’t want him to kill my younger once because they are all i had,i was fully enraged i could not bear it any longer i started a fright with him,when the beating become even more frequents and violent the neighbors began asking questions wanting to know
why he was always beating me i still could not share the true details with even the list neighbors, i would just say he was a useless man.Then i began to spend night away from my house, go clubbing i was dancing my frustration away even as my mother’s body laid in the morgue, after the clubbing session is over i would come home or go to a friends place. this phase of my life continued till my mum was laid to rest. after the final rite of my mum i became emboldened,i defended myself in whatever ways i could, i was violent i was my only protector it was my cross and my fight…
One time, Solomon’s parents had to rush into our apartment to save me from him he beat and forcefully tore off my weave even as it was attached to my real hair. I was bleeding lived with these for so many years all alone wondering why i had to go through all these, wondering what i had done to deserve this kind of life, if this was my destiny,why would some one
I called dad do this to me?was i a cursed child? It even crossed my mind that he might have been getting back at me for something my mum would have done wrong to him,i wondered what it could be?what could make him so grievous. Sometime after the dead of my mum her elder sister came to Lagos for a visit and check on our well being. I was not at home it was one of those times when i had run away,living in a friends place in the cantonment my sister passed the message to me through my friend that my mum elder sister was around, when i got to the house and greeted her, i certainly did not expect the reception i got she started calling me names, referred to me as a useless little slut. she said she had been reliably informed by my stepfather that i no longer slept at home. I was not allowed a word in defense, I just watched and listened as she spewed all manner of accusations at me then,i insulted her I had become used to defending myself,even violently if necessary. At this point in my life, i no longer took aggression from anyone lying against me, i would respond with harsh words at her insults. my mum never told her what my stepfather did to me so it wasn’t her fault she treated me like the way she did but i was having none of it, at the height of it all i reported him to a senior officer at that time a much higher ranking officer than he was, but i was still so scared i couldn’t tell him what my stepfather was doing to me when asked i found myself saying he was inconsistent about our feeding and upkeep he sent for him, when he come i couldn’t say anything he was ordered to be regular with our feeding and basic need when he left, the officer asked me if their was anything i was hiding i said there was,but i could not bring myself to share it with him, i was surprise when he said he felt i was being sexually abused by my stepfather he seems to understand that i was really just scared he assured me he would take care of the situation after that episode,my stepfather hated me even more, a couple of months later the senior officer told me my step father has been transferred to another barracks that was how he was transferred but even before his transfer he stopped sleeping in the barracks he was sleeping in the house of his new wife that was how i gain my freedom,i wanted him to tell me why he did what he did to me i wanted him to beg for my forgiveness ,but he never did to me till the day he died so when i heard he was very sick and paralyzed, i refused to help him i hated him so much,i did not visit him, I was told he died but i could not attend his burial
To the glory of God, I now use my experience as a drag net towards helping all the rape victims that I come across