My name is Oluwabusolami Rafiat Ojo-oba. I am a feminist, social worker, and gender-based violence prevention expert.

I write too, or let me say I love to write and when I’m not doing any of the things listed above, I’m partying, dancing, or scrolling through the streets of social media and laughing my soul away. This is my form of self-care, in this work that we do.

In this Breaking The Silence column of Àyànfé Magazine, you will be seeing and hearing a lot from me; ranging from my writings to my call to action, to building a community of women like us, to meeting physically if possible, and everything good. We will be doing them! In this column, we will discuss everything about sexual and gender-based violence, harmful cultures and traditions, feminism, gender equality, and the patriarchy. I know they are sensitive topics and can be emotionally tasking, but I would like for us to have these conversations and share lived experiences, how they affect our day-to-day lives, how casual misogyny sets us back from job opportunities, to personal spaces, to families, and every other aspect of women’s lives you can think of.

Let’s talk, let’s discuss, let’s learn, build, and fight in numbers. Let’s ask the important questions. Fighting the patriarchy is hard, navigating life as a woman in a sexist country like Nigeria, which is ranked as one of the worst countries to live as a woman, is twice as hard.

Will it be a lot of hard work? Yes. But one day at a time, we can break down the systemic structures, and burn the bridge that sets limits on the lives of women, girls, and children.

And on this journey of learning, we’re going to unlearn SHAME. It is a tool used by the patriarchy to keep women and girls in CHECK, we will disrupt the process. We are going to LEARN. We will learn how internalized misogyny also affects us, we will learn that pandering to the whims of the patriarchy and those who perpetrate it will not take you far. Because to them, you are not one of the boys and will never be. They will only give you crumbs and you will think it is food enough. We will decenter MEN. Women do not have to debate their humanity with anyone.

We deserve a seat at the table, and if they think it is debatable, we will bring our TABLE.

We will do amazing things together, we will build in numbers, the first thing to acknowledging that something is a problem is learning about the problem, looking at those who have done the work before us, the suffragettes; the feminists who fought the good fight, the feminists that ensured we can drive today, go to school, earn incomes, take up positions in government, all courtesy of the women before us who did the groundwork. And that is why I can sit in the comfort of my house and send this out, education did that for me. They fought and we are still fighting, we will always fight till we see changes across the world.

Now the baton has been passed to us, and what are we going to do? We will make our voices heard from the tallest mountain in Africa, to the little oasis in Haiti, from Somalia, all the way to India, passing through Brazil, connecting in America, walking the talk in Peru, to Vietnam, Korea, Tunisia, and all the surfaces on earth where women are born and living in.

We will design the kind of society we want to live in and we will make it a ring of joy, laughter, assertiveness, peace, and equality. So the generation after us will live without fear.

The goal is Liberation, Freedom, Justice, and Love.

So, let’s prepare ourselves and our minds. It is going to be a ride, an interesting journey.

For every time I write, please feel free to respond, and send in your questions or contributions. You can be anonymous as well. This is a safe space for each and every one of us.

We will build a house that supports us all and provide referral services to organizations that work with survivors and victims of abuse.

I will keep educating, teaching, creating awareness, and spreading the gospel that any form of abuse is not normal and no one deserves to be abused.

We are embracing LEARNING.

And what is the goal?

The goal is Liberation, Freedom, Justice, and Love.

Keep your eyes on this space, till the next time I write to you again.

With love and gratitude,

Bubu.

 

 

Busola Rafiat Ojo-oba is a feminist, social worker, and gender-based violence prevention specialist who has trained over 2000+ women on violence prevention, empowerment, and self-defense skills across Africa. She is a change maker, a global citizen,  and a volunteer with a difference. Busola looks forward to working in post-conflict areas and being a college professor because education and teachers shaped her life. 

You would catch Busola dancing, spending time with her family & friends, daydreaming about living in Europe, buying a house in Monaco & Switzerland. And on most days, she is writing to women.