HUMAN INTEREST

Violation of Mothers by Sons By Idang Alibi

In a setting where the boundary between an abomination, a taboo, a sacrilege, an unheard off thing, a desecration and the normal is getting increasingly blurred, I am not surprised that a news item that speaks about the terrible  deterioration in our moral values passed almost unnoticed and completely uncommented upon, a week and a half ago. An Edo woman and mother from the Okpella axis of the state went to farm with her son who is probably an aspiring Yahoo! Yahoo! Boy or an existing one. Filled with an inordinate desire for a short cut to wealth and riches and triggered by a demonic and abominable passion to heed a command given him by a witch doctor, this son grabbed his mother, overpowered and raped her. His goal was to obtain the mixed semen of his evil act for a money ritual.Caught completely off-guard, the woman obviously became disoriented after she realized what had happened. She rose unsteadily from the ground of her humiliation, steadied herself and quickly regained herself because she knew she had to plan her next step. A child who desecrates, degrades and makes a sport of her mother, is an evil child. He is not fit to live. She had to think on her feet. She pretended she was taking the matter very calmly with her son. They got home without her saying a word about the incident on the way. She prepared for him the kind of delicious dish that he used to relish and served him. The only snag is that she administered some deadly poison in the meal. The foolish boy, probably thinking his act had endeared his mother even the more to him which necessitated the kind of kingly dish he was being served, never suspected a thing. He greedily ravished the meal as he had ravished his mother earlier on and died wretchedly in his sleep.The police suspected some foul play and came to the house. The woman asked them not to trouble themselves with investigation. She admitted she did it and asked the police whether any of them has ever raped his mother before in order to get riches from a money ritual. The policemen were shocked and confused and left the woman alone. To prove her reasonableness, the righteous woman took the pains to warn her other children off partaking in the ‘special’ food she was preparing for their ‘hard-working’ brother!That Edo woman from Okpella is one who spiritual people call a zealot. A zealot may not do what is strictly legal but they nevertheless take an action that will calm the anger of God against a cursed land and its people. They understand and speak the mind of the God they serve and, therefore, undertake what is necessary at a material time to stay the hand of a plague. A plague may be unleashed by God against a people for committing an abomination and a zealot who is zealous for his God, without following any legal precept and without giving much thought to the consequences of his or her action upon self, will boldly and courageously act to please God and cause God to feel so sufficiently avenged and to feel that his honour has been restored that He will stop the plague. A zealot follows no law neither can he be prosecuted for violating any existing law. The moral force of his or her action is so self-evident that a zealot becomes the law and its executor That is who that woman is; she cannot be prosecuted although she has killed her son! The punishment served the offender is lesser in scale than the offence committed and its consequences on society.Perhaps, the patron saint for zealots is a man known in the Bible as ‘’Phinehas son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, brother of Moses’’. His story is told in the Book of Numbers chapter 25. Despite the law and constant warnings by His Messengers against intimacy of any kind, not even through the agency of marriage, with the Moabites, the Medianites and other strange men and women, the Israelites were unheeding. Things got to a head when, as told in Numbers 25, in open defiance, an Israelite man brought into the camp ‘’a Medianite woman right before the eyes of Moses and the whole assembly of Israel… When Phinehas saw this abomination about to take place in the man’s tent, he left the assembly, took a spear ‘’and drove it through both of them, right through the Israelite man into the woman’s stomach’’. This brutal execution of the Israelite sinner and her partner so impressed God that he immediately stopped the plague he had unleashed against the nation which had killed 21,000 persons before He stopped it. Not only that, He also signed an everlasting covenant of peace with Phinehas, noting that ‘’he and his descendants will have a covenant of a lasting priesthood’’.Let no one confuse the zealot with the terrorist. A zealot is a clear-headed, self-activated or self-propelled or an unsponsored puritan who is angered by the enormity of the sin just committed against his God and acts with the sole purpose of pleasing his God with the aim of ensuring that if punishment has commenced for the offence committed, that the hand of God is stayed and if it is yet to commence, that God will be persuaded to stay action. The zealot operates from the principle that it is the soul that sinneth that shall die for his abomination.The terrorist, on the other hand, is quite often an inebriated, demented soul, devoid of any religion who is indoctrinated, guided, controlled and unleashed on usually innocent members of society for the sins of others and who acts in order to win the commendation of his controllers or sponsors with the aim of gaining personal glory now or favour in the hereafter. He is a cold-blooded, premeditated murderer whose motive is often selfish or not ennobling at all.All over the nation we now hear stories of how sons are luring their mothers and even grandmothers to hotels where they drug them, rape them and obtain semen for money rituals or to acquire diverse diabolic powers. In the early 2000s, I used to live in Zone 4 in the heart of Abuja. Near my home were quarters where footballers playing for the FCDA Football Club lived. For the purposes of growing our church’s home cell, I was fishing among the neighbourhood for possible converts and became acquainted with most of the footballers and their friends from other parts of Abuja. And I heard a lot of unedifying stories about a very unhealthy sub-culture among our footballers; how some among them and their likes in the entertainment industry seek and acquire demonic powers from Mallams and other voodoo priests in order to become stars and gain monumental wealth and influence. I heard about how they undertake risky trips to far flung and desolate desert locations on the borders with Niger Republic and Chad seeking Mallams, most of whom lived alone in those fearful places. I heard the story of one footballer who later came to national prominence; how he was instructed by his juju priest to sleep with his mother and thereafter, he was not to see her again forever or else he will die instantly. What sort of power is it that will give you the glory that you cannot share with your mother?Surely, modern society needs more zealots than we are seeing now in order to raise the moral tone of our communities before we reach and surpass the level of Sodom and Gomorrah.That Edo woman is a heroine in the service of God. Her action was a redemptive and restorative one. Her violation by her son was an act of depersonalization. She was callously humbled and reduced to nothingness. She was made to look ridiculous. Her essence, her personhood, her dignity and sense of self-worth were taken away. If her son was allowed to live and begin to enjoy the fruit of his evil act, her life will be one of unmitigated shame, continuing guilt and embarrassment. What he did to her was a grave act of blasphemy of a kind because a mother is a kind of god to a biological or adopted son and must not be demeaned in any form or guise. Today in Okpella and beyond, a message has been unmistakably sent out that it is extremely risky for a son to violate her mother to gain unworked for wealth or for any reason whatsoever. With her bold example, many young men in that environment and beyond will think twice before thinking about making their mothers living corpses. That woman will now work with her head held high and will become an example of a righteous woman who resented evil and could not tolerate violation.The narrative about sexual immorality, especially rape, in our society is that they are encounters between unfeeling, brutish male beasts who take advantage of weak, fearful, blackmailed, intimidated and helpless women. The significance, therefore, of the action of that nameless Edo woman is that she has changed the narrative forever by being bold and decisive. Women are not as weak and helpless as they have always made themselves, and society has made them, to feel. They can now see that there is something they can always do to stop the rising tide of sexual immorality and at the same time to regain their voices and powers when they are horribly violated.

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