Prison is just another
world entirely, where people lost their sanity due to
intense and periodic thought of survival. Prison is too-
good to live. A place where a half-cooked tin of beans is breakfast, saltless half-cooked tin of rice is lunch and a tin of garri is equivalent to human dinner. Funny enough one cries is another man laughter. You asked me why?
Yea, let me tell you as at last budget I saw for NPS(Nigeria prison service), one thousand five hundred naira was budgeted for each inmate which included ATM (awaiting trial men), convicted (real prisoner) and liver (life imprisonment). Now, if such amount is allocated to each inmate and yet they are not spending upto three hundred naira for an inmate, then by implication “ones cries is another’s laughter”. Human food here is based on ration. Hmmm! Prison is an institution to study life in diverse manner.
Prison is a country on her own that constitute cells which can be regarded
as states. We have posts like the Provost, vice-provost, IG, DIG with other executives.
I met about seventy eight females as inmates. Among which some were convicted, liver with ATM having the largest population. As an inmate serving a jail term, we would eat beans in the morning before embarking on crude farming of no harvest. Days became week.Weeks became month. Months became a year. Temilade clocked a year in prison.
It’s eight o’clock on wednesday night, time for story as the activity of each cell. The provost of my cell announced the commencement of story telling every inmate to maintain silence thereby appointed mobile police to watch noise maker for appropriate punishment. He commanded IG to mount the next person as scheduled. Few minutes later, a girl was sat down on isolated and only available box. She was asked to tell us what brought her to prison. She said, her father facilitated her present condition.
She began her narrations:
My name is Adejoke, the only daughter of a reputable personality in outside ward. I was just seventeen years of age then. I lived with my father and his gateman. One day I was about to cook, so I went to his room to ask him what he would like to eat. I was about opening his door when I heard him receiving a call. While listening to his conversation, i heard him saying he was unable to get the sacrificial lamb. I was shocked when I heard this which made me to determined to eavesdrop more. I later heard him screaming that he don’t want to die. I was afraid of being suspected by him so I rushed back to kitchen.
Ten minutes later, he
called me from his room. When I got to his room, he asked me to drop the knife I was holding on his table (which I was using to dice onion) that I need to adjust his bedsheet for him. Though I’m not emotionally balance due to what I heard some minutes back. I adjusted the bedsheet but when I was about going back, he grabbed me from behind in an attempt to rape me. I struggled with all my strength to free myself but I couldn’t. He penetrated me, he took away my pride.
After he satisfied his o—-m, I managed to pick the knife and stabbed him twice in his abdomen
and pushed him away in attempt to run to my room.
No one to narrate my ordeal to as I was heplessly remained a being with shattered hope. No one to share my predicament to because I lost my mum when I was just 9years old. What a shameful father I begot!
Twenty minutes later, a team of SSS came to our house to arrest me.
I slept in the cell for two days before I was charged to court and sentenced to fifteen years imprisonment for an attempted murderer without asking me any question from presiding judge.
Hmmm! Where is justification in this country even though I was underage? In my third month here in prison, I discovered that the said rape has finally became a foetus. I wept bitterly with no one to console me. Being rape by my biological father is disheartening and having baby for him is an everlasting stigma. If I want to abort it how do I get the medicine in prison? As some of you here knew, I had a baby for my biological fath…….before she could pronounce that bisyllabic word she was consumed by cry as hot tears trickled down her cheek.
I’m not an exception, tears had soaked my cloth. What a wicked world we found ourselves. The cell was as silence as graveyard that night. I slept with great concerned of what this girl had passed through in her tender age. Is such an heartless father exist? Can such happened? If it’s true, what could be the sole aim of his action? Can he use
his daughter for ritual rite?? These are the series of
questions begging for answer in my heart all through
“The difference between school and life: in school, you’re taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you’re given a test that teaches you a lesson”. And that’s basic philosophy of life.
The following day, I introduced myself to Adejoke in other to make friend with her because I do isolate myself from her before. She asked about my offence which I explained to her. One thing led to other, since that day we became a inseparable friend and fond of ourselves. I was inside cell thinking of what I caused for myself when I heard my name. I ran to cell gate to signify that I’m the one. The wardress told me I had visitor.
When I got there it was my mum and Clarion. I was like disappear when I looked directly to my mum’s eye. I saw disappointment written all over her face, I burried my head in shame and before I knew it, uncontrollable tears was flowing down ……………..
Me: speechless as I could not look her in eye-to-eye.
Me: can’t still answer her.
Mum: Temilade, raise your
head up this is not the time for this; after all the deed has already been done.
Clarion: stop this! you know your mum condition.
I raised my head up with eye of prodigal son who came back to his father.
Mum: when would you regain your freedom now abi you will be here for life?
Clarion: (cut in) very soon ma.
I shook my head in affirmation of what she said.
Me: what about my younger ones?
Mum: they are all fine and eagered to see you.
Clarion: this is what we brought for you. Make sure
you take the drugs inside and don’t be too depressed.
Me: thank so much!
Mum: hope they are not beating you?
Me: no ma.
Mum: are you praying?
Me: yes ma.
I asked about my account from Clarion and she said Bukky had retrieved it back after the judgment. I was bit hopeful when I heard this.
Thirty minutes later they left as stipulated time lapsed. A wardress returned me back to cell.
One day, Adejoke fell down while washing our clothes. We rushed her to heath centre. After the test, Doctor said she is suffering from anaemia. Merely looking at her from head to toes one can frankly say it because she looked very pale. I pleaded to stay with her. She regained her strength in three days later the transfussion and was
discharged. I gave her part of the medicine they brought for me. On wednesday which was our open up day. We walked to a very shady tree because I told her I want to know more about her father. She said, my father is very wealthy and nice. He was the one taking care of me since my mum demise. He showed me love and care which a child deserved from her parent. I don’t know any of his relative nor that of my
mother. When I grew up I asked about
his family which he said they are living in the village that we would pay them visit soon. Days goes to weeks, weeks to months no appointed day for the visitation.
I expressed my dissatisfaction over it but he later urged me to be patience. I equally asked him about my mum relatives alas I was surprised with his reply.
“I don’t know any of her relative” He said.
How do you mean sir?
He continues, I really tried then by pressurized her to take me to her family but she do gives one excuse or the other till death separated us.
Me: Can you describe your father house, his address and
She told me his name and address.
Me: Wait a minute, could it be the person I’m thinking? Adejoke: Who?
He’s God of perfection: no mistake, no error just a matter of time. I pray when your appointed time comes, death will not take you away.
Me: The name you mentioned and your description was just like a man I knew sometimes ago, But don’t worry it can’t be him(I acted in pretence).
Me: where is that your baby
Adejoke: he’s in government orphanage home.
Me: what a pity! He’s a boy? Adejoke: yes o. That’s my
greatest concern. How will I explain to him when he eventually asks of his father.
Me: don’t worry God will guide us about that. How
old is he now?
Adejoke: five years old.
Me: that means you are in your sixth years in prison now?
As we were discussing a lifer(a prisoner that was sentenced to life imprisonment) from another cell named Banga came to us……..
Banga: as you knows that I don’t have hope of getting out of here alive, I just want the two of you to take care of my property when you go out of here.
Adejoke: please Banga, we are discussing an important issue here. Please excuse us.
Me: relax(signalling Joke), sit down please.
Adejoke: don’t mind her Temmy, she killed her husband just because he impregnated her friend.
Me: is that true Banga?
Banga: its true but I had a
Me: can I know the reason?
After lot of persuading, she began her narratiom…..
Banga: I was dating him since when we were in 100 Level in university. He’s an orphan with no body to finance his education. I paid his tuition fees, rented house for him, bought him clothes till we both graduated. After our graduation, my father made me the director of his biggest company, Al-ameen stock exchange. All that time he was still roaming around the street taking his credential from one company to another for appointment. I called him one day to come our house.
When he arrived, I introduced him to my father. He welcomed him. During their discussion my father got
to know that he’s a Christian and that’s the begining of my problem.
At that moment, my dad
became furious and called the security to drag him out after telling him that her daughter can’t marry christian.
I persuaded my father to let me marry him but he insisted that I can’t. I was so depressed with his decision because I was passionately in love with him besides five years relationship.
I couldn’t go to office for about three days which made my father to come my room. I asked him why he hates
christian? He replied, I don’t hate Christian at my youthful age because the holy book(Al-Qur’an) said “there must be tolerance for another person
believes”. When I
graduated, I can’t remember how many shoes I lost to looking for job. After three years of trying, I seeked for an appointment in a company which I read their advert placement on a daily newspaper. I submitted all their requirements, went for
interview and passed. I was informed that I should resume work on the following week via my e-mail. I was so happy
that day that I noted it as the most happiest day in my
life. I told my mum to help me borrow money so as to buy suit so that I can dress cooperately. When I got to
work the following week, I met the GM of the company because he was on business trip then. He accessed my credentials but immediately he noticed that I was a Muslim he asked them to terminate my appointment. What a wicked being(I thought)! If I were God that day, I would have command
the earth to swallow him alive. I returned home as the most hopeless and dejected person in the world. I couldn’t explain
anything to my mum that very day until the following
day. It took me another four years before I could secure the job that eventually made me whom I am today. The most painful thing to me was that, my mum was humiliated
severally before I couldn’t repay the money I used to bought that suit. She eventually died of cancer due to my inability to pay her medical bill. Since then, I don’t associate myself with
After my dad shared his opinion, I begged him
to forget the past for that’s the part of trials Allah want him to pass through to affirm his faith as Qur’an says “believer will be subject to series of trial but verily those who stand on their path will be rewarded”. After much of pleas, he agreed with me.
To my surprise, that very night my father was assassinated by gang of boys.