#MeToo 5 Kenyan celebs who've survived rape and sexual violence

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In light of the #MeToo campaign, here's a list of Kenyan celebs who've survived sexual violence and talked about it.

5 Kenyan celebs who've survived rape and sexual violence play Habida (Courtesy)

“Every time you see ‘#MeToo’ it represents a story that was created in, tragedy but found its way to triumph. Behind every hashtag is a person whose dignity was undermined by sexual violence. We are humans, not hashtags."

These were the words of Tarana Burke, the creator of the “Me Too” movement during a march against sexual harassment along the streets of Hollywood on Sunday.

Sexual harassment has been one of the major setbacks for women in the commercial sector and the ongoing confessions by celebrities all over the world has sparked a revolutionary global front against the demeaning acts.

In Kenya, sexual harassment has been a topic widely discussed, however, not enough to make a substantial change in the society. Unfortunately, the non-discriminative nature of sexual harassment has seen our very own celebrities- victims of the highly intrusive and demeaning acts by perverse selfish criminals who revel in the helpless reality of male versus female strength.

 

Sexual crime not only physically injures victims but leaves a torturous feeling of weakness and injustice in the hearts of those who have gone through it.

That these women have found the strength to overcome and stand above the unspeakable wrong done to them is a flicker of hope that those still suffering may find a voice to ask for help and refuse to be victims of the inconsiderate and inhumane violence.

play Eve D'Souza (Courtesy)

 

1.    Eve D Souza

Auntie Boss actress and producer Eve D Souza was attacked outside her home one Sunday morning by carjackers who raped her. She opened up on True Love Magazine where gave the haunting details of how she was abducted in her own car and driven to a nearby slum where the men forced themselves on her.

“When the men forced their way into my car, I thought they just wanted to steal from me. I remember being pissed off and giving them a bit of attitude, telling them to take the money and the car and just leave. I remember thinking that they were inconveniencing me greatly and I just wanted to go home and sleep. It was 3 am on a Sunday morning. However, I realised I was in a lot of trouble when one of the men slapped me really hard. At the time, they were driving towards a certain slum. When they reached a certain juncture, they stopped the car one of the men went ahead to beat me up and rape me as the other stripped down the car of my stereo and valuables.”

The incident affected her perception of love but she survived it and shared a message of hope when she said, “It showed me first hand that nothing is put in your path that you’re not strong enough to handle. I’ll admit that to this day, I am very cautious about love. It takes a while for me to feel safe in the situation, but I think that’s better in the long run anyway.”

play Habida (Courtesy)

 

2.    Habida

The songstress found it hard to open up about the matter but she did for the sake of healing and moving on. During an interview on Radio Citizen,  Habida told the story of a sick pervert who had been preying on her for quite a long time. She said, “We used to hang out as girls, about four of us, very good friends- quite long ago. So, some men would join us. One of them would tell me, I will get you one day. I was a virgin then. So one day, I got a little bit too drunk and the story is, he was taking me home. I never got home that night.”

Habida said that she found her strength in forgiveness, “It is hard to come out after a rape ordeal. But the first step toward healing is to accept that it happened and forgive the offender.”

play Adelle Onyango (Courtesy)
 

3. Adelle Onyango

The radio presenter opened up about how a tipsy error in judgement saw her get raped during a night out with friends.

At 19 years of age, Adelle and her friends liked to party but not as much as she loved her phone. After leaving it behind in a car that was headed to another club around the streets of Westlands, she decided to walk and get it, a decision she was soon to regret.

“This guy showed up and I keep emphasizing this point because people think rapists have a ‘look’ but they don’t. When this guy showed up he looked so harmless, he looked like someone I went to school with.

He offered to walk me to the club and I agreed to it. I thought it was kind of him to have offered but then we took a route that was quite dark, and I remember wondering why we were taking it, but I was fuzzy from too much alcohol and my judgement wasn’t the best.

We didn’t make it to the club. He pushed me to the ground, and it was on the grass that he raped me. Luckily, there was a kiosk nearby, one that I still see to-date, and after I came to, the shopkeeper saw me, he put two and two together, gave me his phone and asked me to call a number. Any number that came to mind. I called a friend of mine who picked me up, we then went to get our friends at the other club, and although they wanted to rush me to a hospital, I just really wanted to go home first.”

Adelle, like many victims, tried to hide it but she realized that her superwoman act was crumbling in its own wake and finally decided to talk about it.

“By the time I realized my super-woman complex way of handling things wasn’t working, and I needed to tell someone who was close to me. As soon as I told my mum, it became so much easier to deal with, because at least then, I had someone in my court. And that’s how the journey to healing began.”

play Elizabeth Irungu (Courtesy)
 

4.    Elizabeth Irungu

The former Youth TV presenter told a nerve-wracking story of how she was saved from rape by her jeans.

The young presenter was on her way to visit her boyfriend in Eastleigh when the man unsuccessfully tried to rape her.

“The guy did not succeed because I fought him hard and luckily it was chilly so I was wearing jeans and boots. It took him too long to take them off me but I always wonder to myself what if he had succeeded? What if I was wearing say a dress?! Wouldn’t it have left a permanent scar on my soul?” She shared on Facebook.

Ms Irungu urges victims to speak up as it is not something to be ashamed of, “I urge all rape victims and attempted rape to speak up. Those sheikhs counselled me and told me it is not something to be embarrassed about because it was not my fault at all. He was just a bad evil person who did not fear God. So speak up ladies.”

play Liupita Nyong'o (Courtesy)
 

5.    Lupita Nyong’o

As half of Hollywood comes out to accuse film mogul Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, our very own Lupita Nyong’o penned down a shocking detailed confession of how Weinstein tried made several explicit sexual passes at her when she was a student at the Yale School of Drama.

 The worst part of this story is that this list could continue in hundreds of paragraphs with various women sharing their worst nightmares coming true in the hands of sexual harassers.

The likes of Julie Gichuru, Esther Passaris and Zawadi Nyong’o and Bridget Acheing' have also been victims of sexual violence and have come out to speak about it.

play The number of rape victims is ever on an increase. (Courtesy)

 

While organizations such as the Gender Based Violence Recovery Centre by Nairobi Women’s Hospital is invested fully in assisting victims, the rape culture in Kenya is nowhere near eradication.

What is true is that offenders depend on the victim’s silence to get away with their crimes.  At Pulse Live.co.ke we fully stand against sexual violence and anything that supports its cause. Do you have a #MeToo story you would like to share? Let’s chat in the comment section below.

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