The article titled “Nigerian Women Say ‘MeToo.’ Critics Say ‘Prove It.’ by Julie Turkewitz has gone viral, with Nigerians home home and abroad sharing their view on the #Cozagate incident.

This reaction – the need for proof of assault – seems to be a general one, as revealed in the article.

In Julie’s word ” But many women who have come forward in recent months have also experienced a fierce backlash, including attacks on their reputations and accusations that they’ve lied about the assaults. While their critics say they are merely applying appropriate skepticism to unproven allegations, their supporters say that the hostile reaction reveals just how difficult it is for women in the region to speak out about abuse.

Busola, speaking to the New York Times, revealed that the personal cost of coming out to tell her story has been high. “You begin to ask yourself,” she said, “did I do the right thing?” She shared that she’s been harassed on the internet, and has been threatened over the phone. She’s also had to have a very difficult conversation about rape with her three kids.

She spoke about the BBC #SexForGrades investigation, which she was although glad to see receive so much attention, also made her frustrated because Nigerians “seemed to need to see a man caught on video to take an allegation seriously.”

A woman who spoke to the New York Times about Busola’s alleged rape said that, “She was old enough to know to fight back.” The 25-year-old woman revealed that she too was a survivor of sexual assault.

Another man who spoke about the alleged rape seemed to believed that the rape actually happened, but asked that Busola forgive the pastor.

Read the full article on the New York Times.

In the alleged court document, Busola demanded an apology and also asked Fatoyinbo to pay N10 million legal fees for the case.

Taking to his Instagram page, Fatoyinbo denied receiving any court document and stated that if he does, he will respond accordingly.

He stated;

“We have heard the latest report. We have not received any court document and if we do, we would respond accordingly because we have utmost respect for the law.”

In addition, Fatoyinbo captioned the statement;

“I normally would not respond to news. But will do so only this time. Allow me to respond in Pidgin English: ‘Stop lying up an dan.”



Credit: Bella Naija

Detectives from the Force Criminal Investigation Department(FCID), Abuja, investigating the alleged rape against pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo on Wednesday, August 28 conducted a search on the residence and office of the embattled pastor in Abuja.

According to a report by Daily Sun, the police also seized the passport of Fatoyinbo, as part of the bail conditions granted to the pastor. Fatoyinbo was also made to provide two level 16 officers with landed property in Abuja, before he was allowed to be taken on bail.

He was however told to be reporting to the FCID on a daily basis until investigation is concluded. The COZA pastor who attended another round of interrogation Wednesday, has since been released to go home. A source told Daily Sun that part of the investigation that took place on Wednesday was a search on the home of the pastor and his office by detectives.

According to source,  “the home of the pastor and his office were searched today by detectives investigating the matter, but I cannot tell you what they found, but defiantly they were looking for  incriminating documents and other evidences that was revealed by witnesses during the discreet investigation conducted in the matter.

“Also part of the bail conditions given to pastor Fatoyinbo is that he provides two level 16 officers who have landed property in Abuja, and that his international passport to be deposited with the police which he has done”.


Source: LIB

Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo has revealed that he refused to appear before an investigative panel of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) because of a lack of trust in the process.

Busola Dakolo, a photographer, alleged during a taped interview in June that Fatoyinbo, the founder of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA), raped her twice when she was a teenager .

Another former member of his church alleged in July that the pastor raped her during a meeting between the two in 2017.

The PFN, of which COZA is a member, announced on Thursday, August 22, 2019 that the pastor failed to honour invitations extended to him by its “high-powered fact-finding” investigation team.

Among other reasons, Fatoyinbo said he didn’t honour the panel’s investigation because he and his lawyers feared it might be prejudiced against him.

In a statement signed by his senior assistant, Ademola Adetuberu, on Friday, August 23, he said he got legal advice to not make his case before the panel.

He said, “We recall that when Pastor Fatoyinbo was invited by a phone call few days ago by Pastor Akinola Akinwale, who is the National Administrative Secretary of PFN, we explained that our Pastor would not honour the invitation due to legal advice hinged on the ongoing police investigation.

“The legal advice was also premised on the press statement issued and personally signed by the PFN President, Bishop Felix Omobude, where our Pastor was publicly disowned.

“Based on the foregoing, we are convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that the PFN was already prejudiced and may not conduct an impartial session.

“According to the report, Rev. Omobude, whom we hold in high esteem, went further to crucify our Pastor without seeking to know his side of the story on the matter.

“With all due respect, we consider this a prejudicial position in dispensing justice and fairness.” 

Adetuberu denied that Fatoyinbo ever got written invitations as claimed by PFN but that there’s still a chance he could honour the panel’s invitation at a later date.

“Once the police investigation is over, our Pastor is ready to honour the invitation. 

“We have also been legally advised to deploy judicial intervention to clear our Pastor as soon as possible, and the process has commenced in earnest,” he said.

PFN said on Thursday that Busola and her celebrity husband, Timi Dakolo, appeared before the panel.

However, Isong said Fatoyinbo’s failure to appear means the probe has not reached a definite conclusion.

“We may make a further statement on a later date. But certainly, for now, Nigerians and well-meaning people are our witnesses that we have fulfilled scriptural, public and moral expectations as a reasonable and legal organisation,” he said.

Isong also disclosed that Fatoyinbo had reached out to PFN for help when the allegations were first made public and that he expressed disappointment when he wasn’t offered a public show of support.

Fatoyinbo directly dismissed Dakolo’s allegation as false and stepped down from the pulpit until very recently when he returned to the pulpit.

Dakolo filed a petition against Fatoyinbo with the Police in June, but the pastor has also filed complaints of criminal conspiracy and falsehood against her with the authorities.



News source: Pulse News

Celebrity photographer, Busola Dakolo in a new report has revealed that the police forced her to sign their invitation letter at gunpoint.

While speaking in an interview with UK Guardian, Dakolo narrated how she was forced into a van by some armed men who mandated her to speak with their superior officer in Pidgin language.

She also recounted how she was handed a document containing allegations of “criminal conspiracy, falsehood, mischief and threat to life” to sign.

According to her, the contents of the letter were not levelled against Fatoyinbo but against her and her husband.

“One was holding a gun and the second, a letter. They told me they were from IG’s (inspector general of police) office in Abuja and that I needed to sign this letter and acknowledge it,” Dakolo said.

The incident, she said, occurred after a tinted mini bus followed her while she was driving into her home in Lagos.

“Our culture doesn’t allow speaking of these sorts of things against anointed men of God. They’d rather hide it, and the party that is being victimized tends to live with that self-blame,” she said.

“The damage on the survivor is extremely terrible but the society, the church, keeps sweeping things under the carpet.”


Credit: fabwoman.ng


Timi released a public statement thereafter. See the highlights below:

  1. Busola filed a petition on June 27th, 2018, one day prior to the release of the interview, accusing Fatoyinbo of raping her as a minor. The Petition was filed at the Office of the Assistant General of Police, Alagbon, Ikoyi.
  2. Him and his wife have been to the office on several occasions after that, on invitation by the police, to answer questions as part of investigations.
  3. Timi said: “As far as we know, Mr Fatoyinbo has not been questioned on the strength of my wife’s petition – even after several invitations by the Police that we have honoured.”
  4. After Kemi Olunloyo shared their address online, Timi said, “I  want Nigerians, the Armed Forces, Amnesty International and the good men and women of the Nigeria Police Force to know that SINCE THEN people have been following myself and wife in tinted unmarked cars, TO OUR HOME! AT different times, in the last week we have been trailed.”
  5. On yesterday’s incident. Timi said he noticed a tinted bus parked in front of his house, adding that at the same time, his wife was being followed by a car whose occupants he said signalled the bus and armed officers attached to SARS stopped her car and asked her to step down. He said she refused and called her lawyer, and then the officers stepped back and  said they came to hand over a letter of invitation from the police which they did. The invitation letter was based on a petition by Fatoyinbo. It said they police is investigating “Criminal Conspiracy, Falsehood, Mischief and Threat to Life”. However, Falsehood and Mischief are not offences in Nigerian law.
  6. Falana & Falana Chambers are Timi & Busola’s legal representatives and they have told the family that their petition and Fatoyinbo’s will be moved to Lagos.

Timi also responded to questions, debunking rumours that he said he married his wife as virgin, adding that he had to share a video from his wedding after rumours saying he got married at COZA.


S.T.E.R Initiative


Timi Dakolo answering questions to clear some rumours that had been going about his supposed relationships or activities with COZA church.

Embedded video

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See the full press statement below:


Sunday, July 21st

Gentlemen of the Press –

My wife and I have called this press conference because, as a man, I have done what I am supposed to do – I stood by my wife when she decided to go public with her truth. It was not an easy decision but I was raised by my Grandmother – I saw that woman go to heaven and back for me – she used to trek kilometres to go to church to pray for me and sold everything to make sure we ate. From loving my Grandmother, I have a deep respect for women; I took the decision boldly as a man should. I stood for her when she came under attacks from the ill-intentioned members of society. I have fought for her even when I have been abused, lied against and accused of unspeakable things.

As a Father however, I could not have foreseen the events of yesterday when an attempt was made to abduct myself and my wife – FOR TELLING HER TRUTH.

All we have asked is for this matter to be duly investigated. I did not expect that our residential address – where our children live – will be released to the public AND SINCE THEN, I have noted with increasing alarm, how my life, my wife’s life and the lives of our children have been put at risk by unscrupulous persons. We have been followed, our home has been watched, people have been standing in corners pointing fingers at our home – we have been unable to do any work; the children have had to be explained to several times why they cannot go outside and play.

As a Father and as the protector of my home under God, I have decided to come out and speak publicly against the harassment, bullying and maliciousness we have received as law abiding citizens of Nigeria – BECAUSE my wife decided to tell her truth and I decided that I trust her, I believe her and stand by her. I will never leave her side now and I will do my best to protect her. However, the good people of Nigeria, who have shown us so much love, deserve to know what has been happening.

On behalf of my family, I would like to share a few highlights, especially about the attempted abduction of yesterday, Saturday, July 20th, 2019:


  1. On Thursday, June 27th, my wife, through her Legal Representative filed a petition with the police in Lagos State about Mr. Biodun Fatoyinbo of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) raping her as a minor. The Petition was filed at the Office of the Assistant General of Police, Alagbon, Ikoyi. We had 4 meetings spanning over 6 hours at the Police Station on that day and afterwards, the A.I.G himself personally assigned the file immediately and asked for an expedited action to investigate the case. We decided not to publicise the fact that a case had been filed, as we believed that the law should be allowed to run its full course, undisturbed.
  2. We intentionally filed the police case, following the due process of the law before agreeing for the release of the interview that had been recorded many weeks before. The interview was then released with my wife’s permission, on Friday, June 28th, 2019 by Y!TV.

a. We have since been to the Police Station in Lagos several times on invite by the Police to respond to various questions in the course of their investigations. WE WERE THEREFORE SHOCKED TO BE INVITED TO ABUJA – WHEN NO VISIBLE ACTION HAD BEEN TAKEN TO INTERVIEW MR. FATOYINBO.

b. On Thursday, July 4th, Y!TV published another video with a former employee of COZA alleging that Pastor Biodun also raped her. My wife broke down crying as she listened to her interview “There are other women – this recent?!” she kept saying as she cried. What surprised us was how Modele Fatoyinbo, who asked my wife to come and help her look after their newborn child – which is what led to the second rape – is the same person that asked this lady to come and look after her children – again? 15 years after?! It is strange. We do not know this lady, we have still not met her, but we would like to thank her for lending her voice to this truth.

c. As far as we know, Mr Fatoyinbo has not been questioned on the strength of my wife’s petition – even after several invitations by the Police that we have honoured. However, we have been invited to go to Abuja to respond to queries on actions that are not crimes known under any Nigerian law – “mischief” and “falsehood” are not crimes; we were not given details of the supposed case, THERE WAS NO ADDRESS FOR THE POLICE INTERVIEW and NO RESPONSE HAS BEEN GIVEN TO US ON OUR OWN PETITION THAT HAS BEEN FILED ALMOST A MONTH AGO.

d. On Wednesday, July 10th, our address was shared onlineby Kemi Olunloyo in the most careless, reckless and wicked manner. To think she is supposed to be a woman and a mother and had no regard for the safe keep of our children and she has infringed on our Fundamental Human Rights to Personal Dignity and Privacy and is risking the lives of my 3 little children! This was callous! I decided not to engage with her, but I want Nigerians, the Armed Forces, Amnesty International and the good men and women of the Nigeria Police Force to know that SINCE THEN people have been following myself and wife in tinted unmarked cars, TO OUR HOME! AT different times, in the last week we have been trailed. The last event is what happened again yesterday and this time an attempt was made to abduct my wife and I. I had to park our cars and stay indoors. My wife and I have been unable to work and my children have been unable to go out freely even in this holiday period.


  1. Yesterday, Saturday July 20th, 2019 in the early afternoon, I had notice a tinted bus parked near our home. I did not know that at the same time, my wife was being followed by a car into the estate.
  2. She noticed the car and out of fear, parked the car to be sure that her fear was not real – but it was. Every time she parked, the car parked and she decided that she should rush home quickly, since she was near the house.
  3. When she got onto the street, she noticed the same bus I had seen earlier and saw that someone from the car that was following her signalled to the bus, at which point 3 ARMED POLICEMEN wearing SARS vests surrounded her car, demanding for her to come down. The door of the bus was open and she saw that the bus was full of armed policemen.
  4. She immediately called her lawyer and when the policemen heard that she was talking to a legal representative, they stepped back and claimed that they were only there to drop a letter; they had not said this before nor shown her the letter.
  5. Before then, they were demanding that I step outside the house. They had also demanded that my wife step out of the car.

a. The letters the Policemen said they had when they heard us speaking to the lawyer were then presented. We noted that the letters are dated Thursday, July 18th. Why were they being delivered on a Saturday afternoon by a bus full of armed policemen and a car trailing my wife into the estate? Why did they not deliver the letter and leave when neither myself nor my wife were present? And why did they only step back when they became aware that lawyers were involved? These questions have been on my mind. I do not have answers for them.

b. The letters made no reference to any case or matter and it states that we are being investigated for a case of falsehood and mischief – two offences that are not known in law.

c. In the police’s press release yesterday, they claim a Police Invitation Letter is “… a polite investigative tool used in eliciting information voluntarily from parties to aid in police investigation.” If they were just delivering a letter, the manner in which they intentionally tried to instill fear, intimidate us with guns and insist on our coming to their bus – was neither polite nor trustworthy.

d. How is the Nigeria Police pursuing justice when Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo, who is the accused in my wife’s matter, is not being treated in this manner but the authorities I expect to pursue justice are attempting to intimidate myself and my wife?

e. My children were at home!!!! They could also have been in their mother’s car!!!

f. We have never threatened anyone on our lives. Rather, we are now the ones who feel threatened. That is why we have Falana & Falana Chambers representing us and they have reported this matter to the police.

g. We receive the information from our lawyers, Falana & Falana Chambers, this morning that both our petition and the petition of Mr Biodun Fatoyinbo will be moved to Lagos. We acknowledge the effort of the Nigeria Police to ensure that our confidence in their impartiality, professionalism & good sense in this case is not shaken.


  1. We are grateful for the outpouring of love and support we continue to receive from Nigerians at home and abroad. We acknowledge the online support of the First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari.
  2. We will not be intimidated. We are determined to get justice and ensure the church is a safe space for boys and girls.
  3. If they can intimidate my wife and I who have some level of public goodwill, what will happen to Amaka in Maitama who knows no one and has no one to speak for her?



Credit: Bella Naija

The first time a woman is taught to be silent, she is told to be ashamed of her body, to be guilty of it. And she obeys. But when she can’t bear the injustices on her body and spirit, she spits out silence from her throat, speaks out fiercely, courageously.


In the past few weeks, we’ve seen women on social media wriggle free from the stifling rules of the society, telling their stories. With this new culture of speaking out – the Bill Cosby case, the sexual abuse allegations against Harvey Weinstein and its consequent spark of the #MeToo movement, and Busola Dakolo’s revelation, which made Chika Unigwe and TY Bello share their stories – women have been emboldened by the need for justice to call out sexual predators. However, while we expect the world to be happy and provide succour and support to these women, what we see is a whole new disheartening dimension of silencing women and their struggles.

Invalidated statistics flying on Facebook state that not less than 90% of women have experienced, at one point in their life, sexual abuse. The figure isn’t far-fetched in a world abounding with grabby men who feel entitled to a woman’s body; where sex is what a man takes from a woman (and sometimes takes it by fire, by force). It is not unsurprising – though it is saddening – to see people’s need to invalidate the stories of these women, subtly enabling their perpetrators.

Under the guise of standing on the side of truth and fairness, apologists search for holes in the stories, ask needless questions: ‘Why didn’t she scream?’ ‘Why did she go back to him?’ ‘How did the alleged rapist know she was home alone?’ These irritating questions, aimed at gaslighting victims into silence, are endless. And there is the excuse of these questions being necessary to ensure that the (supposed) victims aren’t concocting stories, framing innocent men.

While Aunty Chimamanda has taught us the danger of a single story, when it comes to issues like sexual abuse, it is best to believe the single story of the accuser (while waiting for the story of the accused, which most times never comes) because the accuser has more to lose. Say the victim is found guilty of concocting lies, the accused could sue for defamation of character, shame her, and pass an important message to people like her who may want to do such in the future. And this cannot be compared to the physical irrecoverable chunks of the woman that had been lost over time in a case where the accused is actually guilty.

But apologists fail to see this and go ahead to shut women up. The danger of re-enforcing the culture of silence by disbelieving the stories of women is that it will, in no distant time, metamorphose women into scary, savage beings. Not a metamorphosis per se, but an activation of a latent trait. Or isn’t it said that hell has no fury like a woman scorned?


The second time a woman is taught to be silent, she is told to doubt her story because the world doubts it. Then she says to herself that there is no use speaking out to a world that has chosen to be deaf and blind. So she seeks justice for and by herself, to cleanse herself of the predator.


Should there come a time when we see courtrooms with accused men standing in witness boxes, maimed, when we hear of deaths of accused men, then we will know that the monstrous feminine spirit has been awakened. The rise of a woman, not a cackling hen, but a quiet duck, returning her body to wholeness in the way she sees fit. The woman who no longer latches onto the need for validation, no longer cares about what the society believes or doubts. The woman who will serve ‘plausible’ stories; stories where her total focus is in protecting herself. And it doesn’t matter if her body has already suffered indignity, she will – like a mantis – wring out every pleasure from the body of her offender.

A few years back, we saw a glimpse of this awakening. There were cases upon cases of domestic violence: women with black eye, swollen lips, puffy cheeks and swaths where a weapon had bit into flesh; instead of the world consoling these women, the culture of questioning was used to dilute their stories. ‘Yes, the man was wrong in hitting her, but what did she say to provoke him?’ When the women couldn’t bear it any longer, we heard stories of wives stabbing husbands. A Facebook user called it a revolution. In her words, ‘There is no revolution without blood.’

And it seems we’ve quickly forgotten this. It won’t be out of place to say that women are simmering already; the fire, the anger needed for the activation is burning already. Ijeoma Chinonyeremwrote on Facebook, ‘If you have young girls, rather than enroll them in holiday lessons, take them to self defence lessons. Karate, taekwando, tai chi, jujitsu, krav maga, martial arts, etc. Let them learn how to defend themselves against the Bioduns and Elishas wey full Naija. More are coming o. Walai. Make e no be your pikin tomorrow. Make she at least give them mark.’

While the hilarity of the advice isn’t missed, its truth and seriousness aren’t missed also. In the closing paragraph of ‘The Resurgence of the Monstrous Feminine’ published on Granta, Hannah Williams reveals the plot of vengeance that plays in her heart: She thinks about what it would be like to stalk silently behind men, ‘My feet soft and easy on the pavement, quick flash of my shadow under the street lights, How I’d watch the whites of their eyes shine as they turned to look behind them – softly, quietly, can’t be too obvious – see the glisten of sweat on the back of their necks.’

Just like Ijeoma said, more of the predators are coming.

But the awakening of the monstrous feminine is imminent.

Now this isn’t a call for women to pick up arms. No, far from it. If anything, it is a warning – if the world keeps hushing women running to find refuge and justice under its pinions, the time may come when they will see the need to defend themselves in any way they see fit.

Is that what the world wants?

Credit: Gideon Chukwuemeka Ogbonna, Bella Naija

Bisi Fayemi, wife of Ekiti state governor, Kayode Fayemi,  says she is appalled by the number of women who have come out to shame and condenm wife of singer, Timi Dakolo, who recently accused the Senior Pastor of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly COZA, Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo, of raping her when she was 17. 

In an article she shared online, Mrs Fayemi says the culture of shaming rape victims and forcing them to silence their pain in Nigeria must stop. In her opinon, ”any adult who has a sexual relationship with a girl under the age of 18 is committing statutory rape, there is not such thing as consensual sex with a minor”.

Addressing the backlash Busola has received for speaking about the rape incident 20 years after, Mrs Fayemi wrote

”Over and over, supporters of the Pastor and some who claimed neutrality kept asking why Busola decided to speak up twenty years after the rape took place. Why is she speaking out now? Why did she not say something at the time? I could not believe some of the things people were saying, including those who ought to know better. Busola Dakolo and her husband Timi received unprecedented support for their bravery, the court of public opinion seems to be in their favour. However, I could not help but wonder how we got to where we are, a society blissfully unaware of the war that has been waged consistently on the bodies of women and girls from one generation to the next. Women don’t talk about what happened to them as girls or as adults because of the implications – shame, stigma, punishment, rejection. I am even more appalled at the number of women who have added their voices in the shaming of Busola. If you cannot say anything to support another woman in pain, say nothing. Keep quiet. If you are a fan of the accused Pastor, support him if you want, but you don’t have to call his accuser names.

Mrs Fayemi went on to share stories of how she was almost abused when she was a child and how her gut as a child and her mother’s immediate stand saved her from being a victim

When I was ten years old, my mother brought a male teenage relative to live with us to help around the house. His name was Sina. He slept on a mattress on the floor with my younger brother, while I was on the bed with one of my young Aunts. One night, before I fell asleep, I felt my bed covers being pulled. I pulled them back up. It happened again and I did the same thing. The third time, I allowed the covers to be pulled off totally to be sure I was not making a mistake. I sat up and asked Sina what he was doing. He said ‘nothing’. I stayed awake for most of the night. First thing in the morning, I went to tell my mother. She did not yell at me. She did not scream and call me a liar. By the time I got back from school, Sina was gone and we never saw him again. We never had any male relatives live with us after that.

When I was in secondary school and home for the holidays, I was around thirteen at the time, I told my father I wanted to learn how to swim. There was this young man who lived next door, he used to run errands for my father, we called him Brother Lai. My father asked Brother Lai to take me and my Aunt to Airport Hotel, Ikeja, to teach us how to swim. My first swimming lesson was my last. Brother Lai held me from behind, teaching me how to kick my feet under the water, while at the same time pressing himself against me and touching me inappropriately. When I asked him why he was doing that, he asked, ‘Can’t I play with you’? The next day, when he came around for us to go for the next lesson, I refused. I never told my parents what happened, I just mumbled something about not liking water. I was afraid of causing trouble. I did not want Brother Lai to be sent away on my account, the same way Sina was frog marched to the motor park by my mother. I did not want my parents to think I was in some way encouraging these men to be inappropriate towards me. So, I said nothing, and just stayed out of Brother Lai’s way. Brother Lai had never given any indication that he was anything other than a respected older brother figure. I was however literally placed in his hands and he saw an opportunity and took advantage of it. That is what predators do, they wait for opportunities to present themselves and then they abuse trust and innocence. With hindsight, I shudder at the naivety of my trusting parents. I however learnt to appreciate my mother’s response to my claims, it could have gone differently. What if my mother had not believed me? What if Brother Lai had come into our house and I had let him in, and he had proceeded to attack me in my own home?

Pastor Biodun has since stepped down as the senior pastor of COZA. Busola on her part has reported the case to the police.

Credit: LIB

Six days after Busola Dakolo came out to share her harrowing story of rape by Senior Pastor of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA), Biodun Fatoyinbo, another woman is accusing the clergy of the same thing.

The woman, who says she’s a former member and staff at the church, said Fatoyinbo, who she regarded as a mentor, spiritual leader, and father figure, allegedly raped her when he invited him to his house to discuss church issues.

She said that wasn’t the first time she was going to the house, adding that things moved on really fast and Fatoyinbo in no time was all over her.

She says she hopes that her story will build on the impact of Busola Dakolo’s and Ese Walter‘s stories.

In her story, she said Fatoyinbo addressed the Busola Dakolo incident, saying she had seduced him and “something had happened”.

Her Story

The woman said she joined the church in 2009, and in 2013, when the Ese Walter story broke, she immediately felt the weight of its implications, but dismissed it as some smear campaign. She hadn’t been working closely with the pastor at the time and the church was a place of sanctuary for her.

She joined the music group and was there till 2015, when Fatoyinbo’s wife Modele took an interest in her, and she began working with her on church adminstration duties and even taking care of the Fatoyinbos’ son.

The woman said she had found out about how church members viewed their proximity to the pastor as something special and she did feel special.

She says women and girls who were granted access to the Fatoyinbos’ children were referred to as ‘choice daughters,’ as the pastor was known to guard access to their kids.

She said she took care of the kids from 2015 to 2016, and later on, she moved to another country, living in one of the cities where COZA had a branch.

While she was hired by Modele, her job also required that she worked with Fatoyinbo who visited regularly to minister to the congregation and spend time with his children who were schooling in the city.

The alleged rape took place when Fatoyinbo visited and invited her to the house to discuss church issues.

As he forced himself on her, she says, removing her shirt and unbuttoning her trousers, telling her to “relax”.

She adds that she was too shocked to react, trying to reconcile the person in front if her, with the person who she saw as a spiritual leader, father figure, and mentor.

After the rape, she said he switched back to the pastor she knew, going on to apologise for what happened, saying he didn’t mean to hurt her.

She said she stayed silent and couldn’t talk to church members about it, remembering how the church took the Ese Walters case.

She was happy Fatoyinbo lived in Nigeria, pastoring the church in Abuja, so the distance helped her reevaluate her life. She wanted to leave the church but it would be difficult, seeing the church was responsible for her livelihood. She began saving to come back to Nigeria and continue her life.

One day, a friend called her out of the blues saying Fatoyinbo was asking for her number. She couldn’t tell the friend why she refused to share her contact with the pastor, so she had to give it to the friend to share with him.

Fatoyinbo called her, she said, saying ‘I know you are angry with me.’ She said his apology rang of dishonesty and after the call ended, her other friends called to tell her about Busola’s husband, Timi Dakolo‘s May 2018 Instagram postaccusing an Abuja pastor of sexual assault.

She said she figured Fatoyinbo’s call was an attempt at damage control and if she had any doubts about him being a sexual abuser, that call cleared them.

The rape occurred in the last quarter of 2017, she said, but she continued working in the church till July the next year. She said she told Fatoyinbo of her plan to leave and he insisted that they both see each other before she does so.

She adds that by the time she returned to Nigeria, Timi Dakolo had made his second post, accusing Fatoyinbo of sexual assault, although not explicitly.

One month later, Busola shared her story, accusing Fatoyinbo of raping her twice when she was 16.

The woman said when she returned to Nigeria, Fatoyinbo insisted on them meeting, and he shared that Busola had seduced him and “something had happened.” He said he didn’t know she was a teenager, adding that he had no idea why she was trying to “sabotage” his ministry.

The woman said she doesn’t think Modele is unaware of her husband’s alleged assault, adding that she either intentionally or inadvertently brought young women closer to her, setting them up for exploitation by her husband.

She added that some pastors are aware of Fatoyinbo’s sexual violence but either kept quiet, or enabled it. She called them “The COZA 12,” saying they are pastors within and outside the church.


Credit: Bella Naija

Wife of singer, Timi Dakolo, Busola, has accused controversial clergyman and founder of the CommonWealth of Zion  Assembly COZA, Biodun Fatoyinbo, of sexually assaulting her when she was much younger.

In an explosive interview with YNaija, Busola, the mother of three, recounted how the clergyman who has been embroiled in a number of sexual assault related cases, Ese Walter being the most prominent, allegedly raped her in her mother’s house while she was still in secondary school. In her interview, Busola recounted how the clergyman also allegedly tried having sex with her inside his matrimonial home when she came in to help his wife, Modele, when she had their first child. 

Recall that Timi Dakolo recently launched an attack on the clergyman, anonymously. He called out the pastor, accusing him of taking advantage of women in his ministry and leaving them broken emotionally. Read hereand here.

Read the interview as reported by YNaija below and watch the full interview below


Busola Dakolo was born and lived most of her early life in Ilorin. The first time she left Ilorin was for secondary school at Suleja and that time away allowed her really find her Christianity. She joined and rose to become the vice-president of the Gifted School Academy Suleja’s fellowship and embraced a conservative approach to Christianity, growing to become distrustful of churches and fellowships that tried to copy worldly trends as a way to reach people outside the church. She returned home for the holidays to find that her sisters had started attending a non-denominational ‘youth club’ that embraced all kinds of people and focused on worship and fellowship over doctrine and legalism. It took a while but  her sisters convinced her to go by telling her she needed to meet different kinds of people, especially former prostitutes and cultists that have given their lives to Christ.

Busola reluctantly joined her sisters for the youth club, but she wasn’t comfortable there, partly because of the way they worshipped and because I was the youngest person there. After the service, there was a first timers call, and Busola stood up and introduced herself, explaining her initial skepticism and how their worship had changed her mind. After the service, the pastor of the club, a much younger Biodun Fatoyinbo came looking for her after the service. 

Pastor Biodun wasn’t yet married ( though he was engaged to his current wife) and the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) wasn’t yet a church, it was called Divine Delight Club.

He expressed his surprise at how bold she was for someone so young and encouraged her to keep speaking up for herself. He also managed to convince her to sing at their next meeting before she left back for school. To sell this idea, he offered to personally rehearse with her, mentioning that he played the keyboard. This was before mobile phones and internet, so Busola’s sister had to take her to Fatoyinbo, who was living with his parents at the time. 

Though Busola remembers the song they rehearsed, their rehearsal was uneventful, and at the next meeting she performed, her performance moving enough that a former cultist who was attending the club public renounced his past and embraced Christianity. After, the members of the club affirmed her and Fatoyinbo convinced her through gifts of books and cassette tapes to keep attending their club when she was back home from school. 

Returning to school and the more conservative worship environment she was used to was harder than she had anticipated. For the rest of her secondary school year, she struggled with guilt, shuffling between her role in the conservative Fellowship of Christian Students (FCS) and the more liberal world of Fatoyinbo’s COZA. She felt she was living a dual life. Eventually she graduated and returned home to find that Divine Delight Club had grown into a church headed by Fatoyinbo, and her sisters had convinced her family to join the church. It felt like the only option she had to join as well. 


Busola had embraced conservatism because she’d grown up in a polygamous family and she wanted some control over her own life in service of something bigger than herself. Her father was largely absent in her life and her mother had tried to shield them from the financial difficulty that came with parenting her and her sisters alone but she saw and it affected her deeply. Conservative Christianity gave her purpose and the structure she desperately craved. She joined the choir at COZA as a way to integrate into the church and rid herself of the discomfort she felt towards the church. Being in the choir made her visible and eventually Fatoyinbo would take an interest in her, inviting himself to her home under the guise of getting to know her better.  

The first time he visited, he asked if she’d join him on an errand run. Her mother was concerned but didn’t really push when Busola insisted that she wanted to go. They drove in his white Mercedes Benz and finally spoke for the first time. Though she was normally guarded around men, Fatoyinbo was charming, using his knowledge of her family and the absence of her father to gain her trust. Before long, he was visiting the house regularly, engaging her in ways her unavoidably distant sisters weren’t. 

Fatoyinbo showed up at her house unannounced. It was a Monday morning early enough that Busola Dakolo was still in her nightgown. Her mother had traveled with her sisters and were absent at service the previous sunday. He didn’t say a word, forcing her onto a chair, speaking only to command her to do as he said. It took Busola a while to come to terms with what was about to happen, and it was why she didn’t struggle or make a fuss when he pulled down her underwear and raped her. She remembers he didn’t say anything after, left to his car, returned with a bottle of Krest  and forced her to drink it, probably as some crude contraceptive. She remembers him saying. 

“You should be happy that a man of God did this to you.”

At this time, his wife had just given birth to their first child, Oluwashindara. 


Busola spoke up because her husband, the singer Timi Dakolo put up a social media post on Instagram accusing Nigerian clergy of condoning rape and sexual assault. People had approached him anonymously about Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo targeting underage girls for sexual relationships and he felt obligated to publicly speak up on their behalf. His posts had created intense backlash and support and sparked rumours about who the subject of his post was and who the victims were. This wasn’t the first time Timi Dakolo had spoken up about sexual assault and he was aware of what had happened to her from the beginning of their relationship. 

What motivated her to speak up about her rape was a social media post from an anonymous account that had insinuated that she had been promiscuous as a teenager and had affairs with pastors when she lived in Ilorin and questioned the paternity of her children.  

The reality was, rather than the fabricated promiscuous teenager, Busola Dakolo was an isolated girl, terrified of Fatoyinbo whose salvation story heavily featured his past as a cult member. She was too terrified to tell her sisters or mother about his violence, stewing in silence for a week. Her sisters were active in the church, and to avoid suspicion she followed them to church the next Sunday. She remembers he spoke about grace during the service and after, Modele Fatoyinbo asks that she come to help her with her new baby, something she had never done before. It was normal for church members to come serve at the pastor’s house so her sisters allayed her protests. 

Feeling she had no options, she went to her pastor’s house, Fatoyinbo tried to isolate her later that night from his wife and their daughter by insisting she slept in the family’s guest room. She managed to thwart his plans, appealing to the pastor’s wife to let her sleep in their master bedroom. 

“No one ignores me.” 

He would tell her this the next morning, smacking her butt. It was an ominous enough statement that Busola became apprehensive and tried to leave for her house once it was past twilight. It was the first of many threats she would get from the flamboyant pastor. Fatoyinbo would insist on dropping her off at home, even though she protested several times. Instead of dropping her off at the junction as he had promised, he detoured, driving her away from safety and towards a secluded spot. He threatened her the entire drive, making proclamations about how he owned her and how he was angry that he had thwarted her the night before. He opened the car, pulled her out of the passenger seat and raped her a second time in the space of a week. First behind the car, then moving her to the bonnet for ease of access. 

She didn’t fight, she had lost all her will to. She’d protected her virginity for so long that having it forcefully taken this way broke her. He guided back into the car when he was done, and told her he loved her, speaking of how he’d told his pastors that men of God raped women, that there was nothing special about what he did. He dropped her off outside her home as though everything was normal. She bathed immediately after and didn’t leave her room for three days, but while her siblings were worried about her, no one made any connections between her sudden mood and her married pastor. Busola’s family was a ‘church family’, a family so involved in church activities that their home was routinely used as a hostel for visiting ministers and guests of the church. Fatoyinbo had exploited that, and did it again when he showed up the next Sunday, to ask why she hadn’t gone to church that Sunday. She was afraid of drawing attention to herself, so she went to church the next Sunday, and kept going, even though she left the choir and began to voice her dissent towards Fatoyinbo. 


A dream was the catalyst for Busola opening up for the first time about Fatoyinbo raping her. Her elder sister had relocated to Lagos, and she pleaded to visit, drained from avoiding the pastor. In Lagos, her sister who she believes has the Sight, told her about a dream she had had, where she’d seen Busola crying, blood on a chair and Fatoyinbo smiling. She asked her pointedly, breaking months of silence and starting a flood of admissions about the rape and everything that had happened. Her sister convinced her to return to Ilorin and together they told her other sisters and her brother, who was studying at the University of Ilorin. Her brother flew into a rage, grabbing a pocket knife and taking her to Fatoyinbo’s house. He was able to intercept them before they reached his house, and together with Wole Soetan, who she suggests is now the pastor of the COZA Portharcourt branch, convince them to return home and that Fatoyinbo would follow. 

The pastor and two of his church members would eventually come to pacify her family, blaming the devil and Soetan even promising to leave the church to show how little tolerance he had for promiscuity. After Soetan would confide in Busola that he couldn’t leave the church because he felt Fatoyinbo was ‘weak’ and needed spiritual guidance and support. He convinced her siblings to keep the rape and assault from her mother.  Numb to all emotion, Busola pretended to concede and after two weeks of constant visitation from the pastors and the unspoken implication that Fatoyinbo was an alleged reformed cultist with a lot to lose if news of her rape went public, she returned to the church to protect her family and project normalcy. It was clear to her at this point that she would never feel comfortable within organized religion. 

Fatoyinbo continued to target Busola in the intervening months, organizing prayer sessions and specialized deliverance sessions with guest pastors to help ‘repair’ her ‘bondage’ and suggesting to her that the violence he had meted towards her was a problem they both had in common and needed communal deliverance, Busola would find out that Fatoyinbo had been telling church members that she wasn’t ready for a relationship when the pastor’s cousin befriended her. Their time would eventually develop into a relationship and she would confide in him about what had happened to her. 

With his help, she would leave the church and join another congregation.  

Credit: LIB