Baba Ijesha defiled minor on two occasions, Forensic expert tells court

“My conclusion is that she narrated the whole truth, she was tenacious, she was bold and relaxed,” the expert said.
Baba Ijesha defiled minor on two occasions, Forensic expert tells court
Baba IjeshaFILE

A child forensic expert, Mrs Anike Ajayi-Kayode, on Tuesday, narrated before an Ikeja Special Offences Court how Nollywood actor, Olanrewaju James popularly known as Baba Ijesha, allegedly groomed and defiled a minor whose name is withheld.

Ajayi-Kayode is the Executive Director of the Cece Yara Foundation, a non-governmental organisation founded to prevent child sexual abuse and provide emergency intervention for children.

Testifying as the third prosecution witness, Ajayi-Kayode told the court that she is a certified child forensic interview specialist.

She said she had participated in over 25 child forensic interviews.

Led in evidence by Mrs Olayinka Adeyemi, Lagos State Director of Public Prosecution, Ajayi-Kayode said that the alleged victim was relaxed, cooperative and could recall events when she was being interviewed.

She said, “The clinal presentation of child sexual abuse was quite evident. The perpetrator engaged the child in sexual activity when she was seven years old on two occasions.

“On the 19th of April 2021, he sexually harassed her, touching her body. He told her: ‘I touched you some years back, you are so grown, so developed. Do you have a boyfriend? We have some unfinished business.

“These are the clinical presentations of child sexual abuse.

“These are the dynamics of child sexual abuse and the modus operandi of perpetrators – inculcation of secrecy, intimidation, threat or coercion.”

The expert noted that child sexual abuse involved only the victim and the perpetrator, adding that because of his or her vulnerability, a child might not be able to comprehend the magnitude of the offence.

Ajayi-Kayode said that after the interview, she drafted a forensic interview report.

A copy of the report was presented to the court by the prosecution as evidence. It was marked as Exhibit G.

The witness also said that the forensic interview was digitally recorded.

Flash drives containing the digital forensic interview of the minor were also tendered in evidence by the prosecution and were marked Exhibits H and H1.

“My conclusion is that she narrated the whole truth, she was tenacious, she was bold and relaxed,” the expert said.

The judge adjourned the case till October 20 for cross-examination of the witness.

Actress and comedienne, Damilola Adekoya aka Princess, the foster mother of the minor, and Nollywood actress, Iyabo Ojo, were present in court during Tuesday’s proceedings.

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