Nigeria: Lagos State shuts down Chrisland Schools following rape scandal

By 'Tofe Ayeni
Posted on Friday, 22 April 2022 11:09

Students are seen in a classroom as they receive lectures about prevention of sexual violence, by a representative of Women at Risk International Foundation (WARIF) at Oregun High School, in Lagos
Students are seen in a classroom as they receive lectures about prevention of sexual violence, by a representative of Women at Risk International Foundation (WARIF) at Oregun High School, in Lagos, Nigeria March 31, 2021. Picture taken March 31, 2021. REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja

On Monday 18 April, Lagos State shut down all branches of Chrisland Schools in the state, after a video surfaced showing the rape of a 10-year-old female student that the school allegedly tried to cover up. The Lagos State government in this instance has been quick to respond to the situation.

The event allegedly took place in March in Dubai, UAE, at the World School Games, an annual competition with schools from all over the globe. Chrisland took 76 students to represent them.

Although the video appears to have been circulated amongst parents and children of the school since March, it only became public knowledge last week, when talent manager Ubi Franklin, a friend of the girl’s father, came forward with the story on Twitter.

Speaking to the Nigerian newspaper The Guardian, the mother of the child recounted how she was only told about the incident after someone contacted her: “A parent called me and said that she needed to see me urgently. I went to her house and she told me that something had been trending in my child’s school and she believes I was not aware. The woman showed me the video and told me that all parents are aware.”

Reaction of the authorities

Chrisland, which describes itself on its website as, “the largest privately owned educational institution in Nigeria’, suspended the girl for ‘improper behaviour’, saying she was a major participant in a game of ‘Truth and Dare’ played by the students after lights out whilst in Dubai.

Rather than blame the parents, many online commentators were quick to react to the school’s decision to suspend the girl, adding it was a failure in properly surveilling students while abroad.

Lagos State shut down all branches of the school in the state on Monday 18 April, saying in a statement: “The attention of the Lagos State Government has been drawn to the alleged sexual violence case involving students of Chrisland School. It is pertinent to note that all allegations are being investigated by the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies…”

With quicker timing than is usually expected from the government, all parties involved were invited to a meeting at the Lagos Ministry of Education on Wednesday 20 April, according to Channels Television.

The government has also warned against the distribution and watching of the video, as it constitutes child porn. Unfortunately, this has not stopped its circulation.

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