Following an alleged sexual violation involving several students on an overseas trip, the Lagos State government announced the closure of all Chrisland Schools in the state on Monday.
There are at least seven branches of the institution around the state.
The news comes months after the authorities shut down Dowen College in the aftermath of Sylvester Oromoni’s controversial death.
The alleged sexual assault occurred in March while Chrisland School was in Dubai for the World School Games, a four-day yearly tournament that attracts schools from all over the world.
When Ubi Franklin, a talent manager, accused the school of participation in the alleged sexual abuse involving the minor and another male pupil, the story went viral.
“I just got off the phone with one of my friends. His 10-year-old daughter was chosen to represent her school in the World School Games in Dubai,” he tweeted late Sunday night.
“His daughter was r**ped by classmates, videotaped, and shared on Instagram, and the school kept quiet about it for a month.”
Chrisland is no stranger to sexual scandal. In 2018, a court found Adegboyega Adenekan, a 46-year-old instructor at the school, guilty of raping a two-year-old female pupil.
“The attention of the Lagos State Government has been drawn to the alleged sexual violence case involving students of Chrisland school,” the statement reads.
“It is pertinent to note that all allegations are being investigated by the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, including the Ministry of Education, Office of Education Quality Assurance, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Ministry of Justice and the Lagos State Domestic & Sexual Violence Agency, whilst the criminal allegations have been escalated to the Commissioner of Police.”
The authorities also urged those in possession of or disseminating the sex tape to stop doing so or face a 14-year prison sentence as prescribed by law.
“In the meantime, all Chrisland schools within Lagos are hereby closed, pending further investigations,” the statement continued.
Hours after Mr Franklin broke the news, he posted a video of the mother of the female minor narrating how the school concealed the matter from her. The mother said a parent who had seen the explicit video had informed her.
The woman, who didn’t mention her name, said she got a call from the school headteacher, G.I Azike, to come to the school.
“When I got to the school, I met her with two other women in her office. And one introduced herself as Mrs Kemi, I can’t remember her surname,” she said.
“They said they came from Chrisland headquarters. That they wanted me to know that my daughter whom I left in their care, who they took to Dubai. That she had a kiss with a boy and the boy also kissed her and that they found out that they got the kissing thing from Truth and Dare. So, I said okay…”
The woman told the school that she was going to seize her daughter’s phone following the report to prevent further a recurrence.
“I asked if there was anything else, they said no,” she continued
She further said that they advised her not to disclose the discussion to her husband.
According to her, about two to three weeks later, the school management invited her again, this time to a virtual meeting with the board of directors.
“And one, in particular, Akin by name, began by saying if there is no sin there is no forgiveness,” she recounted.
“He was speaking in parables, at a time, I had to ask what are you people discussing? He now said no, that he just wanted to do a follow-up to ensure that I have withdrawn…(name withheld) phone to and to check on how she is doing.”
“I said she is fine. He now made a comment that when it happened. I said sir, what happened. He said…(name withheld) did not tell you? I said she didn’t tell me anything.”
The mother said that after pestering the management without result, the meeting ended.
Two days later, a parent from the school called her to inform her about “what is trending in Chrisland, that all the parents are aware.”
“So, immediately I informed my husband. Look at what is going on, then we began to call Mrs Azike, she refused to pick up her call. I called her more than 20 times and she didn’t respond to the call but later I think she spoke with my husband and she said that she didn’t know anything if such a thing existed,” the mother said.
The woman, thereafter, said she asked her daughter and she confessed to her that Mrs Azike has “threatened her not to speak out. So, she narrated how it happened, how they abandoned them in the hotel, and how she got into this thing.
“So, even on our behalf, they have been having meetings, they have been sending delegates from their headquarters to have meetings with my daughter without my consent. I was not aware. We were not informed.”
Chrisland suspended the ten-year-old female student for what they described as “improper behaviour.”
In a suspension letter obtained by Peoples Gazzette and dated April 14, the school told the parents that their ward was a “major participant” in a truth-or-dare game with other male pupils.
They, however, did not state the nature of punishment meted on the male student involved or the others in the video.