Queens College, Lagos, is currently embroiled in a sexual molestation scandal.
The mother of a student of the school had on Friday, accused a teacher- Olaseni Oshifala, of sexually molesting her daughter, a JSS 2 student of the girls-only school.
In a letter which she wrote to some online blogs, she recounted her daughter’s experience with the teacher.
She explained that Oshifala, an Integrated Science teacher molested her daughter at night when she went to ease herself.
“She started screaming and then students started coming out so he left her and pretended to punish her. But the students already know his ways so they started booing him until the housemistress came out and chased them inside, telling them to be quiet and that nothing was actually going on.”
However, when she reported the case to the Vice Principal, Mrs Kayode, the VP allegedly said nothing could be done about it because Oshifala is her ‘person’ and that nobody could dismiss him from the school.
“I got to the school first thing the next day and spoke with the housemistress who confirmed to me that the story was true but she warned me that the Mr O- is a favorite of the Vice Principal Mrs Kayode. I spoke to a couple of other teachers and they all confirmed this story and the Mr Oshifala’s tendencies.”
“The teachers also mentioned that he had been reported before at the Abuja Headquarters for sexual harassment and he was almost sacked until he begged this same Vice Principal who squashed the complaints.”
Subsequently, the story spread like wildfire on social media, which forced the college alumni to call for an emergency meeting on Sunday.
But in a swift reaction, the school principal, Lami Amodu, released a statement on Monday, denying the allegations on behalf of Oshifala.
She stated that the allegation is strange to her as no parents or students has ever reported Oshifala to her.
“As I talk to you, no single parent has come to me or any of my Vice-Principals to report Olaseni as a molester. I assure you that if the allegation was true, other parents would have been buzzing our lines non-stop.”
“Personally, even before I resumed, a former principal of Kings College had recommended Olaseni as a credible person to work with. His name is Otunba Dele Olapeju. He is a highly respectable man. Let us not forget that Olaseni worked with five different principals, all of who also told me good words about him, despite the various allegations against him.”
“I have investigated and we are not relenting in our determination to get to the bottom of this case. The man in question has been of impeccable character and committed service since I resumed work here. I can vouch for him. When I resumed work here, I was told a few unsavoury things about him. But investigations showed that each time a new principal resumed at Queens College, these allegations popped up.”
“They would tell every new principal that Mr Olaseni is a molester. But after investigations, nothing concrete came up. My predecessor, whom we just sent forth today, told me the same thing. So it has been a recurring decimal, these allegations. We have come to understand that some persons are on a campaign of calumny against this teacher. Yet, he is the best teacher in our school.”
“During World Teachers’ Day, he bagged five awards. The students all have good things to say about him. Somebody somewhere is up to some mischief and we will uncover this unfortunate drama.”
The Chairperson of the school’s Parents-Teachers Association, B.E Akhetuamen, also said the claims were an attempt to disgrace Oshifala.
“I have two daughters schooling here,” she said.
“After six years in the school, I should be able to trust them to intimate me about things that happen in the school, especially when I ask. They have made it clear to me, no such thing occurred. Meanwhile, no parent has called me to make any such allegation against the teacher in question and I find it very strange.”
“It would not have needed a blogger to break the story,” she said.
“There is a policy against use of phones in the college but we hear rumours that some students smuggle in phones. Do you imagine that such students would not have called their parents with the gist? And for all this time that the event allegedly occurred (one month now) do you think that no parent would have raised eyebrows?”
“When I asked my daughter about this story, she said she only started hearing about it today. I am an Edo woman, I speak from my heart because I fear only God. Even if I face anybody now, I can defend him (Olaseni) authoritatively. I have always recommended him to every principal that was posted here.”
The Senior Boarding House Mistress, D. A Oludinmu, admitted that Osifala comes around the hostel because he is the Hostel Maintenance Officer.
“But there is a procedure for that. He never comes without the permission of the principal and even during emergencies, he does not come alone. The principal still has to permit him, and he always comes with the maintenance boys.”
“Mr Olaseni does not come to the hostel outside working hours. I can vouch for him,” she said.
Meanwhile, on Monday, students of Queens College were seen in the rain, carrying placards in their uniform protesting that Oshifala is innocent of the allegations leveled against him.