Baba Ijesha Alleged Defilement Case: Forensic Video Interview of Survivor Shown in Court

The trial of Nollywood actor, James Olanrewaju also known as Baba Ijesha over an alleged defilement of a minor continued today (Wednesday) at an Ikeja Sexual offences Court, with the prosecuting counsel showing a forensic video interview with the victim.

In the video, played before Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo, the 14-year-old survivor was seated on a sofa relating to the child expert, Mrs Olabisi Ajayi-Kayode how Baba Ijesha allegedly defiled her inside their house and inside his car.

Mrs Ajayi-Kayode relax was heard telling the victim to relax and that she has a right not to answer any question she doesn’t want to answer.

While answering questions from the child forensic expert, the survivor said she likes reading novels and watching cartoons and movies.

Asked to relate what she remembered about what happened seven years agọ, she said Baba Ijesha used to visit them in their house and on the day in question, she was watching a cartoon when the defendant came in and that her Mother was not at home.

She described the position of the settee, the shelf and carpets in their parlour.

Using a female and male dolls for narration, the survivor described where the defendant sat and invited her to sit on his laps.

She also used the dolls to describe how she was allegedly defiled by the defendant.

She said Baba Ijesha asked her if he should bring out his manhood but that she didn’t answer him, but he brought it out and made her sit on it and that after sometime, she felt his wetness, after which he used an handkerchief to clean himself while she went to the bathroom and used water, soap and a towel to clean herself.

She said that the second day, he came to their house and told her mother that he brought fruits for her and that her mother instructed her to follow him to his car to bring the fruits.

The survivor explained that the defendant parked his car away from their house and that when they got to his car, Baba Ijesha opened the passenger door in front and she had to kneeled on the seat and stretched out to reach the fruits on the back seat.

The survivor said it was during this process that the defendant allegedly inserted his car key into her virgina.

She said that she did not see Baba Ijesha again for about seven years until April 19 this year when he suddenly appeared in their new house.

According to her, when Baba Ijesha came in, he went round the house and was checking the walls.

“I was afraid because I didn’t know what he was about to do. I sat at one side of the settee, he sat on the other side. There was a throw-pillow between us.

“He asked if my mum was around, I was afraid to tell him whether or not she was at home.

“He called me ‘my sweet girl’ and ‘my baby’.

“He reminded me of the events of seven years ago.

“He called me to come and sit on his laps and I said ‘No’.

“He said when I was small, I was not afraid of him, but now you are afraid.”

At this stage, the DPP, Mrs Olayinka Adeyemi stopped playing the video clip on the order of the Court.

Under cross examination by the lead defence team, Babatunde Ogala, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria,SAN, Mrs Ajayi-Kayode told the court that she was a qualified lawyer and certified child forensic expert and that she trained and was certified abroad.

She also said she was not a child advocate but a child forensic expert who had received training on child psychology and development.

She maintained that the brain of the survivor was well developed to recall events that took place seven years ago.

Mrs Àjàyí-Kayode maintained that the survivor gave a good account of what happened to her seven years ago without an interference.

Asked how she was able to determine if the survivor was telling the truth, she answered in the affirmative stressing that she only asked her open-ended questions.

“When we are doing forensic interview, we always invite the Police”, she added.

Under cross examination by Dada Awosika, SAN, the witness said the method she adopted ìn interviewing the survivor was a global protocol.

She explained that to be trained as a child forensic expert, one must have obtained a university degree in law, medical science first, among other degrees.

The trial continues tomorrow (Thursday, 21/10/21)

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