Crime

I was seduced by my 14-year students – Azunere, 23-year-old assumed rapist

Chima Azunere, 23, a teacher from Imo State but working in Ogun State, was recently arrested for allegedly raping one of his pupils, who is 14 years old. Azenere tells DAUD OLATUNJI he does not know what came over him and made him sleep with the pupil in his friend’s apartment
Before your arrest, what were you doing for a living?

I was working as a teacher and also as a fashion designer. I was teaching at a school at Papa Ibafo, Ogun State.

You have been accused of raping one of your pupils, why did you do it?

It was a case of rape and defilement. Actually, I don’t have anything much to say; I will only say it was a mistake and devil’s work. I wasn’t expecting what happened, but it has happened. The only thing is to find a way out.

How did it happen?

It all started from the school, I used to teach them practicals. I was employed as a teacher to teach them how to make garments and my pupils were over 30. Last Wednesday, they all came to my office to see me and ask how to go about the practicals.

Initially, they were to submit their work on Friday and when they came around, I explained to them what to do. However, about three or four of them came back, including the girl in question. I cut out some fabrics for them and showed them how to sew.

She sewed and made some mistakes, so she came back and showed me what she did because she was the only one that sewed on that Wednesday. I told her she made some mistakes and needed to correct the mistakes. But she was not willing to sew again that day, so she waited until Thursday.

She returned on Thursday. I corrected her, showed her the errors she made and made the corrections for her. But when she sewed again, she made the same mistakes and closing time was drawing nearer. So I told her to come back the following day, which was a Friday.

On Friday, the school deliberated on whether to close the because of coronavirus pandemic. We (teachers) were actually running around to prepare and coordinate examination for the pupils. While I was in the office with my friends having a discussion, she came with her classmates again. Due to the stress of coordinating the pupils, I was so exhausted and tired, so, I told her to come back later.

She came back around noon and again, closing time was approaching. She and her friends deliberated on coming to my shop and I said it was not a problem.

I told them that if they could come to my shop, we would surely work together like we usually did in school. But unfortunately, she was the only one who came around 5pm. I was not in shop when she arrived and the owner of the shop was busy with the two (sewing) machines.

I was in my friend’s place relaxing, when she came to the apartment. She knocked and I opened the door for her. She came in and brought out the fabric, but I told her to undo some of the mistakes she had made while sewing.

While I was in the room, she called me that she needed water. Immediately, I went out to buy two sachets of water, I gave one to her and took the other one. After taking the water, I went inside the room with my phone and called her. When she came in, she looked into my eyes and I looked into her eyes, then we mistakenly kissed; that was how the incident happened.

Had you asked her out before then?

Actually, we had not discussed anything about what was going to happen.

Did you have any feelings for her?

Actually, on February 14, 2020, she and some of her classmates bought a greeting card for me in the presence of my friend. I opened the card and found the things (they wrote) inside to be shocking, but I kept it somewhere because I did not have any interest in that. But I was surprised.

When I called her back to ask for the meaning of what was in the card, she said it was her group of friends that bought the card and shared to some of their teachers they loved and that I was one of them.

I accepted the card and kept it in my locker, thinking it was just teacher-pupil love and friendship. I never had any special affection for her and don’t think she did. I cannot say if she was directly telling me that we should be dating, but that was the content of the card.

What class is she in?

Science department, Senior Secondary School 1. My job was to teach them how to sew attire for male and female. During that period, they were trying to sew the attire that would be used for their cultural day on March 27.

I actually told them to use the sewing machines in their various houses but she was very serious and zealous in learning how to do it in school so that I could put her through. The school has sewing machines that pupils can make use of if they don’t want to do it at home.

Do you have any advice for male teachers thinking of doing what you did?

If their female pupils are coming to them, they should make sure they avoid having any discussion with them alone. If they want to have any discussion with their pupils, it should be in the midst of others.

When last did you see the girl?

She was here on Tuesday (during the week) to make her statement. I saw her and felt very bad. I think she feels bad too because her mother and father were not interested pursuing the case; it was a pastor that informed the NGO which brought up the case. Even her mother was crying and felt very bad when she saw me in the condition I was.

I want the government to temper justice with mercy. I promise not to do something like that again.

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