Contributed by Emiliene Alemkeng

One Friday evening at about 4pm while returning from school, I saw a man beating a young woman in the street of Douala, Makepe. This girl of about 24 tried running to no avail and only some by standers came to save her from the man. When asked what the matter was, the man narrated the story from the beginning.

The man said he has been living with his sister for about five years and sponsors her in the university. She started taking several excuses to sleep out. It’s either for a funeral or for a birthday party and so on. He was not alarmed because he felt it was normal that she help her friends in need but it later became worse and worse as she started giving more flimsy excuses that did not make sense. He then decided to trap her and it did not stay long before she told him her friend is sick and is living alone so she wish to go and watch over her. He agreed so she took some few stuffs put in her bag and when was about to go, he proposed to drop her. That’s how they kept moving from one street to another and she said she has forgotten her friend’s house. When he asked for her friends phone number, she said she was not having it and that’s how he got angry. When he finished explaining, some people laughed, others poured insults.

I took the girl to one corner and asked her own version. She told me all what his brother said is true but the reason she did it was because she was going to see her boyfriend and could not certainly go with her brother. I told her she was matured enough to do things overtly and has the right to keep a boyfriend because her brother will not get married to her. All she needed to do was tell her brother about that. She told me she once told her brother about that but his reaction was disastrous so she decided to give flimsy excuses for it seemed it is actually what he wanted.

Living with people is not an easy thing to do but it can be wonderful if we learn to understand, respect each other and give them their rights as adults. I think this girl’s brother was only trying to protect her but he simply went about it the wrong.

Edited by Jennifer Nesi