If anyone had told me that my story would be published in the news, I would have said, what is it about my life that is interesting enough for anyone to read?
I am an ordinary truck driver and I have no issues with people. I lived a quiet and simple life, until the wife I married pushed me out like an infant of 8days; she brought me out to public view like you would a child at its naming ceremony.
I can swear. See me biting these keys in my hand and ogun is my witness, I never laid hands on this woman who has been claiming that I have been beating her.
Let me tell you what happened.
This woman and I have been separated for more than two years; why did we separate; her shina was too much.
A woman who’s shina… oh, you don’t know what shina is? It is when a woman is promiscuous, a woman who’s ‘eye is always outside’, never satisfied with her husband’s ‘thing’, she wants to be doing it outside, that is shina, now.
Ok, her shina was too much, many times, people would call me to tell me the way and manner my wife was seen at a particular place or with a particular man. They suspected that she may be sleeping with this man or that man. I never listened to them because she is not just a wife, she is the mother of three of my children.
Even my brother called me one day and said, ‘Ogbeni, be careful with this woman, o. The way I saw her with your landlord, it can’t be ‘ordinary eye’ o.’
What would I have done? Would I have chained her to the bed every time I was going out? We would quarrel over the matter, she would deny it and I would warn her that people were saying things about her that she should be careful with her waka waka.
But did she listen to me? For where? My mouth is smelling.
How did we now separate?
She became pregnant two years ago and gave birth to a baby boy. I was happy, of course, it was my boy child, I thought. A few days after, I was still thinking of how we would do the naming ceremony when my in-laws called to tell me that my landlord had come to them, insisting on doing the naming ceremony because the baby was his own!
That’s a taboo!
My own son being claimed by another man, right under my nose! What man will take that nonsense?
That was when I can say I lost it because I asked my wife, is it true?
I sent her away from the house, tell me, what man would endure that kind of thing?
I don’t know how she managed herself, I didn’t care. If the child isn’t mine, why carry another man’s load on my head?
So now, she’s been telling everyone the reason she went for my landlord is because I used to beat her, look at me, if I beat a woman, do you think she would survive? One slap will make her deaf forever.
That is why I am here today;
I am not even sure whether our first child is even my own, who knows?
(Series written and edited by Peju Akande and based on trues stories)