Thursday, February 28, 2013

Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-10

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

I am still trying my best to take the children to another province to begin our lives again. I know that if I am better educated, my children will be better for it. I will be more financially able to provide for them, and they will not have the constant influence of C who keeps on telling them that education is not important. He mocks my educational goals. The children says that he says all this 'book book and school school thing is not important'. I, on the other hand, cannot stress enough how important an education is to their lives. So, they're getting conflicting messages. My son recently tore up a homework paper saying it wasn't important, and that, of course, is because of the message that has been hammered into his head by C.

My mother's youngest brother moved here from the UK in August 2012. He is not much older than I am, and my mom raised him, so I often call him my brother. He started to talk to C immediately when he arrived, and C assured him that this time if I wanted to go to school that he would not do anything to stop me. My uncle let him know that I would not be able to leave the children behind and go to school, so they would need to come with me. C agreed. My brother told me, and I immediately told C that I wanted it documented by the courts. He said he would get his lawyer to do it. I said “Let's just go and get a consent order from the courts, so we will not need a lawyer.” He refused.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-9

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

After I had bathed and got dressed, I called a woman called Uyi who was mostly looking after the children at that point. I told her to please come over as soon as possible, that C was raging, and I had to go to work, but that I was afraid of leaving him alone with the children, seeing as he was so angry. I felt that if there was another person in the house, he would not be able to do anything to them. Uyi said she was in Vancouver and that she would come very soon.

I called another person from the church, and he was fairly new at the time. His name was Manas. I wanted there to be somebody around C to provide a buffer between him and the children, seeing as he was in such a very angry state of mind. Manas soon arrived with another man called Emmanuel. These were both young guys in their early 30s, I believe. Also, unbeknownst to me, there was a third person, called Michael, who was in the car who had driven them down. I met them at the door and I asked them to come in. I said, “Please wait until Uyi arrives.” C then came down and asked them to leave. I gave Manas my key and I said, “I invited you, if he locks you out, just open the door and come in.” C said, “Okay, you're not going to work then! Get back inside!” And he started to drag me back in. I fought him off, and I think one of them held him, and I asked the men again to please  wait for Uyi, who was going to arrive soon. I wanted there to be somebody there with my kids and with him. So he said, “Okay, if you guys want to stay, that's fine, but I'm taking the children and I'm going to go out.” So when I got outside to go to work, I went to the van that he usually drove – it was my van, I had got it – and I disabled the gears. That way he would be unable to drive the car with the kids in it, seeing how enraged he was. I went to work.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-8

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

After C had called me a baby killer and a murderer, even after I had suffered through the ordeal I had just suffered through, and humiliated me in front of people, I knew I could no longer live with him. I made up my mind to move with the children once I was well enough to.  At this time also, a woman from Nigeria came to visit her daughter who was a student here. She said she was a bishop and that she had told C she wanted to meet me. So, she came to the house. I was still ill and in bed, and she advised me to take my children and to return to Nigeria. I said, “No, I have nothing to go back to in Nigeria, and I have a good job here, and I will be able to care for my kids here once I am feeling better.” She said, “Look how sick you are. You need to be taken care of. Go home. Go to your mother.” And I said, “No, I am fine. I am already recovering. I will soon be much better.” I thanked her and I said, “I will survive. I am well. Very soon I will be back to work.” I reiterated to her that I was making good income, and that when I was sufficiently recovered I would take the children to Disneyland and just other child-centered resorts so that they could start making some happy memories.

To my intense surprise, after about a week after this woman that said she was a bishop had come and visited, I was served court documents. C had gone to court and got an order that said I was not allowed to take the children out of BC without the express written permission of the courts. He said that the bishop woman had told him that I was planning to leave Canada. That really was the absolute last straw for me. I packed up all of his clothes from his room, I threw then all outside. His shoes, his jackets, just everything – I threw them all outside, I was done. I decided that if I was going contrary to the bible, that I didn't care. That I could not live this hell for a single day longer.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-7

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Some names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

My daughter was born in the spring of 2006. She had a foot deformity at birth. I started to take her to the pediatric orthopedist when she was only four months old. The morning she was born, I had been woken up at about 6:00 am by intense labour pains. I had a quick shower and I went to the kitchen to get breakfast for David, who would soon wake up since I was gone from the bed. C came out while I was in the kitchen and said, “Where are you going so early?” I said, “The baby is coming so I have to go to the hospital. I am getting food for David. If you will get him, I will get his food and you can drive me to the hospital.” Well, he said, no, he wasn't going to drive me, he was going to stay at home and look after David. I said David could come, just drive me and drop me and then you can go back, but he still refused.

I called Evelyn's mother, Hannah, and asked her if she could come drive me to the hospital, but I'm not sure what delayed her, and the times were getting shorter and shorter between  my contractions. So, I just went to my car and I drove myself to the hospital. When I arrived at the hospital I parked and I started to walk toward the family birthing unit.  I was walking and just trying to hold on to the sides of the wall, I was in so much pain. I looked up and there was a wonderful woman standing beside me. She looked at me and she said, “Oh my god, you're in labour!” She ran for a wheelchair, which she brought back and sat me in, and then pushed me to the reception. I told them there as were checking my preregistration that I was very close to delivery. I said, “I can feel the baby coming!” And they rushed me to a room. I could also hear them paging the doctor stat. Two nurses were putting sheets on the mattress with a plastic cover, and another one was setting up an IV pole. The one nurse kept saying, “Are you pushing? Stop pushing!” Well, I couldn't hold back. While they were still trying to get the bed made, I pushed the other nurse aside, got on the bed, and I just had my baby. It was about 9:00 am by then. One push – boom – and she was out, just screaming. She was born so fast, her eyes were blood shot for two days afterwards. She was the most adorable baby girl I had ever seen, and I was completely, just completely in love with her. And my love for my dear Ctine has only grown more and more as each day reveals a new aspect of the beautiful, wonderful, kind, cheerful, loving girl that she is – my Ctine.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-6

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

I continued to dote on my son. I couldn't get enough of him. I breast fed him exclusively. I spent every dollar I had on his clothes, his books, and his toys. I started to read to him before he was 4 months old, and David could read by the time he was 4 years old. I also, of course, had to go back to work at the Surrey Tax Centre, after he was 4 months old. My maternity employment insurance benefits were not very much, and I had to think about the baby as well. I was breastfeeding, but we lived only about a 5-minute drive from the Tax Centre, so on my breaks (I had two half-hour breaks), I would run home and feed him. I did not know at that point about expressing breast milk. I was on my own. I had no friends with whom I could discuss things like expressing milk.

C and Mary got even more close at this point, and after C had prevented me from going to bury my father, I did not want to stick around the house and watch he and Mary carrying on in front of me, so I figured I better go back to work – and I did.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-5

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

I now had to come to terms with the fact that, whether I liked it or not, and that whether I wanted to or not, that I was involved with the church. I was, after all, in the sight of all the world, apparently married to him. I was the 'pastor's wife'. Nobody knew my secrets, or my hurt, or my pain. Human beings are, for the most part, about themselves. How could I have expected the people that came to church to be different? “Church is like a hospital,” to quote my pastor today, Pastor Wes Daase, “everyone comes to be treated, and if in the course of being treated you are able to help others, than you are doing well.” And I now know that part of healing is helping others to heal as well.

Anyway, nobody knew of the anguish that I was in, and if they suspected anything, well nobody ever said a word to me. People kept coming to me for different reasons. Mostly it was to complain about C – how he would never close on time, how when you told him something he either said it on the pulpit or he said it to other people. That was a really disgraceful aspect of him. He was a gigantic gossip, and he soon came to be known all around the community that you could never tell him anything and expect it to be kept confidential. It didn't matter how big or small it was, he would soon spread the news around. I really attributed this to his having too much time on his hands, and also he had absolutely no concept of time. Up until I ran from him in 2009, I had never, ever, seen him be on time for anything, not even once.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-4

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

I kept on trying to call my supervisor, and soon started to get worried about not being able to return to my job, or even to get a new job. I had only ever attended three job interviews in Canada, and all three times, I had got the jobs, so I was really worried about not even getting a single call about a job. I began to be afraid that C had indeed put a curse on me and that was why I was unable to get a job.

Rose and I attended Calvary Worship Centre, a predominantly black church in Burnaby at the time, pastored by a Ghanaian, and after my ordeal in Ghana, I was loathe to have anything to do with any other Ghanaian; but the pastor of that church called me up and asked me to bring C to the church. He and his wife had been very kind to me when I first arrived in Canada, so I took C to his church to meet him. I hadn’t been going to church since coming to Canada with C. He had been going out and about, and I don’t recall now if Rose took him to Calvary Worship first.

When he came back from the church, he decided he was going to start his own church. He said he would start by having prayers for people there in the basement suite. He kept going to Calvary Worship, and was soon telling people he would perform deliverance on them and cast out whatever demons was causing any problems in their lives. I had many comments that I really badly wanted to make, but since most of them would be vitriolic in nature, I kept them to myself.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-3

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

I stopped thinking about running away, or not being married to C. I had no plans for escape. I was trapped and that was it. I was going to stay married and take him to Canada. Things would be better there I promised myself. I said C would not be able to beat me with a stick or do all the other evil things he had done to me, or rape me just whenever he felt like it. I would be in a safe environment, and maybe once he was in Canada, he would think I wasn’t good enough for him, or he would find another woman to prey on. I started feeling a bit hopeful. I was sick of being in Ghana by now. I decided to petition the High Commissioner to allow for C’s processing to be expedited so that I could return home to Canada.

I had given up my job, my apartment, sold my car, and borrowed some money from my friend Twy to add to what I had saved up. All of that was exhausted. I was also constantly on the verge of a major asthma attack due to the poorer air quality, and my inhalers were nearly gone. I needed to get out of Ghana.  I also thought that I was pregnant, because I hadn’t had a period in 3 months and was suffering severe nausea and vomiting.  Now, I wonder if I really was, and had miscarried early or if the severe stress and pressure that I was under had caused a hormonal imbalance. I guess I’ll never know.

The High Commission soon answered and agreed that the application was straight forward, and that C could come for his medical forms. He went to Accra to pick them up. I stayed in the room and threw up. I paid for the medicals to be done, and soon the results were out. I was really looking forward to returning to Canada. I longed to breathe easier, and to return to school as soon as possible. Schooling was my initial reason for moving to Canada, and I could not lose sight of that goal. After C got his Permanent Resident visa, I told him that I would return to Canada, in order to look for money to send to him to come, but he refused totally.

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Please Help Amaka Munonye Get Her Children Back-2

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Before you start reading, let me repeat that this is a long story [10 pages], and if you do not read to the end, you may not fully get it. Amaka Munonye is a Nigerian resident in BC, Canada and in the process of getting a divorce from her Ghanaian husband. At this stage, all you read are her side of the story. Their case is in court and she is afraid that if she keeps silent, she may lose custody of her children. She has shared the following story on her blog and I've been asked to help publicize it. If you know anyway to help, please do, or leave a comment in a respectful manner. Beyond that, I believe this is a story many women stand to learn a lot from. Thanks.

*Names have been initialed to protect third party privacy.

The rest of my days in Ghana were a blur. I stayed for about a month, which I spent mostly vomiting from anxiety, and the stress of how I was going to inform my parents about the awful things that had happened to me. Eventually, I did not have the courage to go to Nigeria, so I returned to Canada, without going home to Nigeria knowing that my life was over. Back home in Canada, I got a new job at the then Revenue Canada, it was part of the Public service, and I still wanted to fulfill my promise of service to my adopted homeland. I didn’t think I would be able to pass the physical tests for the army or the police, so I was happy to get into Revenue Canada. I started to work for the GST section and then as an Error Inspections agent in the T1 individual returns section. I started to eat to mask my misery. I would eat a 325g box of Rice Krispies with over half of a 1.5L bowl of ice cream in one sitting until I was so full, I would start to vomit.

A German friend of mine Udo who I hadn't seen in years was in Vancouver, saw me at the convention center and came to talk to me. I must have seemed like a madwoman to Udo I said “Sorry Udo, I cannot talk to you. I cannot be near you,” and just ran from him. He couldn't have imagined that in my complete fear of C that I was trying to save his life and/or my life too. I continued to work and to send money to C.

The phone calls were unending. I had given up all hope by then. I called my sister Ifeoma, and told her everything. She said she would go to a pastor in Redeemed church who she was sure was a real pastor, and she could ask. She called me back within a week to say that she couldn't see a Redeemed Church pastor, that it took too long, but that she had been to a church called Mountain of Fire and Miracles, and that she had been told that a blood covenant was a deadly thing, and that two people involved had to break it in agreement, if at all, and also that it frequently involved death. My sister and I agreed that I was completely trapped, and that I really had no choice but to put in my sponsorship papers for him.

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Fried Plantain With Tomato Stew and Chicken

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Fried plantain is also called Dodo in Nigeria. The usually ripe plantain is cut in slices, diced or chopped and deep fried in oil till it is done, about 8 - 10 mins on medium heat. We don't often eat fried food, I know it's not too good for you as one gets older, but once in a while you just want to chill and eat some foods of your childhood or simply have the variety available. I also enjoy unripe plantain, boiled or cooked, see recipes here and here, or ripe baked plantain here.

Someone moaned on my Lasagna post about how much calories the meal must have, and I responded by saying that for me, when it comes to healthy eating, I can't count calories. Generally, I'm more spontaneous than methodical and so choosing what to eat, when, and how much, is easier for me than being so detailed on each meal, or cutting out some meals entirely. I promise though, after this, I'll post some healthy eating, salads and stuff, LOL...

BTW, I do not deep fry my dodo, I use just enough oil to cover the bottom of the fry pan. I use medium heat and turn over the plantain a couple of times.

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Talking to the Men Who Rape Syndicated on BlogHer

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Some of you may remember this post, "Let's Talk to the Men Who Rape, Shall we?", where I talked about how we can reduce incidences of rape by talking to men also and not just to women. That post went on to get a response from Kenechi Uzochukwu, published on Ynaija, which in turn spawned a host of articles and conversation on the topic of rape in Nigeria. It remains one of the best articles on this blog, and was recently picked up by BlogHer for syndication on their website.

"BlogHer is the largest community of women who blog: 55 million unique visitors per month (January 2013, Nielsen Site Census). Engaged, influential and info-savvy, these women come to BlogHer to seek and share advice, opinions and recommendations. BlogHer’s team works hard to bring you the best and brightest conversations, writers and speakers – online and in person."

I'm so excited to have been featured among the "best and brightest" of women blogging around the world, and to have my work read by that many people? WOW! I also work with BlogHer's Publishing and Ad Network to promote this site and get revenue, as well as reading their amazing site daily for news, posts, and topics that affect women in America and globally. If you've not visited them before, I recommend you do so today.

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Watch the SVU Episode Inspired by Chris Brown and Rihanna

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The NBC series, Law & Order: SVU, frequently draws inspiration from real life for a lot of their episodes, and have portrayed the DSK rape case, illegal guns entering the US black market through the CIA in Mexico, among others. In this, their latest episode, the theme is domestic violence based loosely on Chris Brown and Rihanna and the pre-2009 Grammy incident that became a media circus.

On the show, Caleb Bryant’s character plays CB and Micha stands in for Rihanna. The plot not only name checked them, in addition to the male character having the same initials, it also referenced a photo of the battered female singer and Caleb wearing a bowtie for one of his TV interviews just like Chris Brown did.

Loads of the music star's Twitter fans have condemned the show and how the storyline played out. I wrote my own review here. Chris Brown and Rihanna are back together, it's left for them to make it work for better rather than for worse.

Watch the full episode below.

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An Opportunity For Real Life Match Making

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I have never done this before but it has been a wish of mine, and now it seems I have the opportunity to do it right. I got this email below from a reader of this blog who is open to being matched with ladies ready for a serious relationship leading to marriage, and who live in the United States.

Hello Myne,

Compliments of the season,
I stumbled into your blog site and I find it very interesting. I must say congratulations on all you have achieved. I will like to know if you are involved in matching persons who are interested in marriage. If no, can we try something out through you ?
I am a Nigerian professional currently in the Carribean. I visit the US regularly, and my ultimate goal is to move over there, so I am looking earnestly for a suitable wifey at this time.

Many thanks, Peter Branson ( Not real name )

If you are interested, please send me an email at myne@mynewhitman.com and we'll take it from there. If you know someone who may be but doesn't read this blog, do share. Please only serious comments and emails, thanks.

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Dear Myne - He Didn't Buy Me Anything For Valentine

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Good day. I have been in a relationship since November last year. We met on Facebook and became fast friends. We are from the same place and live in the same city so we met offline quickly and soon began our relationship.

 At 1st we talked everyday and chatted on BBM constantly. That was short lived as before long, he started being tied up with work and he really works - from Monday to Friday then on Saturday also till 12noon. So the calls dwindled. I realised that I was the one doing everything in the relationship. When I talk to him about this, he apologises and promises to do better.

Well, Vals day came and what I got was Happy Valentine's Day, Sweetie via bbm. No call, no text (he's never sent me a love text by the way) not evn a dp on bbm. This, while I spent about 20k getting him stuff for vals day. Not that I regret what I spent because I love making people feel loved and special.

When I went to his house that evening, he was very happy about the cake and other stuff I got for him. I told him I wasn't happy that he didn't get anything for me. His excuse was that he was broke. That really hurt me because although I know he spent money moving to his new place, it wasn't like I was expecting a car or a yatch. No matter how small, its the thought that matters.

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Jason Njoku - February Man Candy #28

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Jason Njoku is an enterpreneur and the founder of Iroko Partners, ownersof IrokoTV, IroKing and some other web properties. He just last year got married to Mary Remmy, Nollywood actress. Jason was a speaker at the TedxEuston and explored failure and how it can lead to success.


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SVU Predicts Tragedy For Chris Brown and Rihanna

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One of my must see shows on TV is Law & Order: SVU (NBC), and after last weeks episode, they showed a preview of today's show. A beautiful young hip-hop star is beaten up by her boyfriend and it becomes a media circus when her crime scene pictures make it to the papers and blogs. Sound familiar?

I knew immediately they were referencing the Chris Brown-Rihanna saga from some years ago, and looked forward to seeing what they come up with. This is not the first time they're basing their episodes loosely on real life characters or events. In this case, I was intrigued by the timing with Chris Brown and Rihanna recently back together and talking about how much in love they are with each other.

So how did their episode go? Micha confronts her hip-hop star boyfriend when she sees him flirting with another woman and he beats her up. The witnesses all refuse to testify against him, either afraid to lose their jobs, or losing face. After her wounds heal, so does the assualted Micha. According to her, she's receiving tweets that are either calling her a ho or begging her to forgive him.

Even their producers are in on the cover-up, and play all cards including the race and hip-hop card to get the police to drop the case. Bottom line, they want Micha and Caleb Bryant to keep making money for them. And of course, there is the love card, the two young people are in LOVE. "Their relationship, it's complicated," one of them says.

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