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“Rape is Rape” Stephanie Linus’ Brother Accused of Rape. Here’s Her Official Statement

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BN Saturday Celebrity Interview Stephanie Linus - June 2013 - Bellanaija008Stephanie Linus is speaking out about rape allegations made about her brother, asking fans and journalists to keep focused on getting justice for the victim and for her brother, Daniel.

Read her statement below.

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“I am distraught and devastated to hear of the recent allegation of rape brought against a relative of mine, Daniel Okereke (my brother).

While it is a very difficult time for me, and my family; I feel the need to make clear my position, lest there be any doubt. Rape is rape, regardless of who the face of the accused is.

Indeed, the irony is not lost on me. I have spent my lifelong career advocating and living my conviction that women around the world should be able to live free of violence, sexual harassment or any form of abuse against their persons. This conviction led me to be involved in numerous initiatives combating violence against women in several countries including the U.S, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

The conviction also led me to place much of my energy on my work with Vesico Vaginal Fistula (VVF), a passion that dates back to my time at the University of Calabar.

As a student, I heard a story about young girls who had been forced into early marriage and were suffering the negative and embarrassing effects of VVF. The story stayed in my consciousness and drove me, for years, to seek ways to raise awareness on the condition; leading to my work with a team of dedicated doctors to carry out repair surgeries for VVF victims across the country; and my self-produced, soon to be released movie, ‘DRY.’

So, again, it is indeed heart breaking for me to receive and deal with news alleging a family member of mine is an alleged perpetrator of sexual violence against a woman. I am devastated.

This case is now in Nigeria’s criminal justice system as the accused awaits arraignment. I have also encouraged and assured the alleged victim of my stance against rape and applaud her for her bravery to upset the culture of silence, in Nigeria; even as I accord deference and patiently wait for the criminal justice system to determine the guilt or innocence of my brother.

For Nigerian press and blogs; I call on you to please report this case in an ethical manner. I am a married woman living my life. The alleged transgression of my relative does not make it mine. The focus should be the impact of rape on the alleged victim, and resources for other alleged victims, not me.

Some members of the press and blogs have turned me into the accuser; using my name for sensational headlines and putting my images, exclusively, in their stories. This is a form of victimization of me as a woman, its unethical and extremely hurtful. I am not the alleged accused.

I therefore please ask all bloggers and the media who have placed my pictures and name to this story to refrain from further using me to sensationalise this story.

I thank my fans, and all well-wishers for your continued support and ask for your continued prayers.

God bless.”

64 Comments

  1. bruno

    November 24, 2014 at 9:46 am

    very good statement. someone had some pr training.

    I didnt know her brother was accused of raping someone.

    1
    • Jennifer

      November 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm

      Yeah, you’re right Bruno.
      BN, btw, after she asked bloggers not to use her name for the story, you’re doing just that.

      1
  2. tee

    November 24, 2014 at 9:51 am

    Bellanaija, I wonder why you are using Stephanie’s picture to sensationalise this story too, u should at least seek her brother’s picture and use. Kudos Stephanie on your stand against rape irrespesctive of who it was that committed the crime…

    1
    • TA

      November 24, 2014 at 11:02 am

      Exactly what I thought too. She just pleaded that her photos should not ne used in the story…

      1
    • Jo!

      November 24, 2014 at 11:31 am

      Dodo, was it her brother that released a press statement?

      1
    • jhennique

      November 24, 2014 at 2:37 pm

      LMAO @ Dodo

      1
  3. chigurl

    November 24, 2014 at 9:54 am

    What a horrible thing to be associated with.

    1
  4. Adaora Onyenede

    November 24, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Exactly my stand on this issue. This Daniel is her cousin for crying out loud. Why make her suffer the sin of another for the sake of relative. Please the media should disassociate her name and good image from this ugly act. Daniel Okereke has parents and siblings so why are they detached? Am so bitter that after working so hard suddenly someone will just decide to smea your good name in the mud. God bless you Stephnie Okereke Linus, I’m your fan for life, you just made my day with this public address. Thank you for calling them to order! Gosh! Wish I could vent my anger on these unprofessional brains who parade themselves as journalist. Karma will catchup with all of you. Please when next you want to make a headline use his parents and siblings names…period!

    1
  5. Idomagirl

    November 24, 2014 at 9:57 am

    RESPECT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1
    • Omo1

      November 24, 2014 at 10:36 am

      I SECOND THIS!!

      1
  6. omoobanta

    November 24, 2014 at 10:01 am

    she approached this like the grown, mature and intelligent woman that she is

    1
  7. Que

    November 24, 2014 at 10:09 am

    Alasss!!…..she can teach her fellow celebs (Tiwa and co. are you hearing)…how to respond to media/public image issues!.. when you have a history of relevant facts, it isn’t that hard! Now I hope the media will pay attention where necessary….

    1
  8. ada nnewi

    November 24, 2014 at 10:15 am

    And this is how a GROWN woman speaks!!!!

    1
  9. sleek

    November 24, 2014 at 10:17 am

    Good………I just love her

    1
  10. Rs

    November 24, 2014 at 10:22 am

    As it should be done

    1
  11. Kokuikana

    November 24, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Very well said, on point..!

    1
  12. Scared homosapien

    November 24, 2014 at 10:34 am

    This is how the world should be, human beings denouncing evil in every form of it, not minding who perpetrated it. A criminal is a criminal, whether a brother or not and should be treated as one.
    My sincere commendation, Ma’am.

    1
  13. x-factor

    November 24, 2014 at 10:38 am

    whoa! Feel your pain!
    This press release is dope!

    1
  14. Somt

    November 24, 2014 at 10:46 am

    I respect your PR manager. … A thought through statement. .. RESPECT.

    1
  15. Funsho

    November 24, 2014 at 10:46 am

    Use to be indifferent about her! But now i respect her! Officially a fan’

    1
  16. Asgrl

    November 24, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Class act

    1
  17. kk

    November 24, 2014 at 11:11 am

    100% respect for Stephanie Linus!!!!!!!! it must be really hard for her.

    1
  18. carberry

    November 24, 2014 at 11:23 am

    Renewed respect for you Stephenie, Bellanaija take down her picture or didn’t you people read her statement. Make a different and dont join the bandwagon.

    1
  19. NAms

    November 24, 2014 at 11:28 am

    My respect for this lady hasnt shaken a bit, a role model she is

    1
  20. Promo Blog By Gloria

    November 24, 2014 at 11:31 am

    I have always been a fan of Steph cos she is an Exceptional Lady. Its either he did it or someone is after tarnishing Steph’s Image. But if he did it, ITS A SHAME, Not to you Steph, but to HIM.

    1
  21. great

    November 24, 2014 at 11:41 am

    I must commend your PR team. As this statement is perfectly structured to reach out to the masses and retain your fan base which is quite understandable. Nonetheless, the allegations against your brother as completely genuine. One of your brother Daniel’s victim was raped at the age of 11 in Asaba where you all grew up. His victims are scarred for life. In fact many women have live with the far reaching effects of rape; STD’s, unwanted pregnancy, bodily harm and the emotional trauma .
    It is true that you are not the accused and your career needs to protected. But please refrain from suggestions of this inhumane behaviours as being mere allegations they are real. What you should you do is be seeking professional help for him. Because I am not sure how the public will react if this happens again.

    1
    • mc

      November 24, 2014 at 1:30 pm

      They are allegations. Every accused is innocent until proven guilty.

      1
    • Mims

      November 24, 2014 at 1:55 pm

      It is merely an allegation till proven otherwise. Let the courts have their say. There are 3 sides to every story. Your side, my side and the truth.

      1
    • word

      November 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm

      Ah it shldnt happen again o! The guy and his instrument need to be locked up for a long time

      1
  22. great

    November 24, 2014 at 11:42 am

    sorry “are”.

    1
  23. LILO

    November 24, 2014 at 11:43 am

    Spoken like a true class act. COZA leaders and followers, when you have a chance, please contact Stephanie ‘s PR team to help you proof read that robust response that we are still waiting for o…the lord is your muscle

    1
    • tunmi

      November 24, 2014 at 4:33 pm

      hahahahaha thank you oh, please remind them

      1
    • amaa

      November 24, 2014 at 5:08 pm

      No be small COZA and robust reply . Chai Naija oh una don kill me oh we are still waiting COZA for your Robust reply oh

      1
  24. ammagh

    November 24, 2014 at 11:49 am

    Wow. Good English and truthfully your PR skill is just marvellous. U just earned my respect Steph. And kudos for reprimanding and doing the needed! People should learn how and when to talk or issue statements. Medaase.

    1
  25. social media 9

    November 24, 2014 at 11:55 am

    Wow! Am glad you have spoken out. Because this guy has been a real terror for so long even in the village in Ngor Okpala Imo State. Where “Daniel Okereke” carries guns and the fear of Daniel is the begging of wisdom. The worst thing is that your parents condone it. He always boast’s that his aunty former DG Nigerian stock exchange connections places him above the law and untouchable.
    My point is you people have known this all the while it was only a matter of time. And God eventually exposed this!
    If you do not condone it why allow it continue to happen this long. Its unfortunate that your career is at stake and he is your brother. But It is what it is and must be treated as such .

    1
    • Ona

      November 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Do u know everything ur siblings do? It will surprise u the secrets ur loved ones are hiding. The letters i read from some of his victims, they all said they never reported the rape cases because of shame. It goes to not only show that his family probably didnt know, but also shows the rotten, disgusting way our society reasons.

      1
    • Mama

      November 24, 2014 at 5:07 pm

      You are so stupid it’s amazing….. U need your brain checked…. So every one in your freaking family are saints? If nobody came out till now to press charges will they go on hear say? Where did u ever see any of his family stand and support his behaviour? Will they kill themselves cos they have a black sheep in the family like most people? If u have no facts about a matter better to shut up than tell lies……stephanie given a very mature response here and bloggers should give her a break…..

      1
  26. Didi

    November 24, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Very well said. This is how issues should be addressed. Maturely and straight to the point.
    @Tiwa Savage and the rest…..please take a cue from this. Responses are not all about telling haters to hug wet transformers.
    @Bellanaija….please accede to her request and take her picture down. There is a picture of the accused circulating which you can use for your story.

    1
  27. sum1special

    November 24, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Its sad she is associated with this horrible person, and it sucks more when blogs and papers tag her face to the stories, with that said, i respect her for releasing statement.

    1
  28. Blue

    November 24, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    She has also been very classy. And her “no-nonsense” approach gets both my thumbs up!

    1
  29. shelly

    November 24, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    And this says it all. She is great and in a league of her own. Very well said.

    1
  30. Keys

    November 24, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    Respect to Stephanie for standing against rape irrespective of the person involved. I have always been indifferent about her but now I am a fan.
    My condolences to all his victims and victims of rape everywhere. I know the feeling as I was assaulted as a child…severally.
    After years of dealing with anger, I realized not one bit of what happened was my fault. I was only a child.

  31. Just Wow

    November 24, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    Silence is golden , you should never have spoken ! If you don’ t condone it ! Expose it ! Whose side are you on?
    You have stated all the charitable work you have done for women which is commendable. But there is no reason to shout down women who are victims of this wicked acts. Which is what this public statement of yours is indirectly and politely doing!
    Your page on face book showcases numerous pictures of various charitable work you have done. It is glaring that your PR team have being doing a good job of your of your image for so long . I am begininng to have a re-think of your honesty as an ambassador for female empowerment. It is true that you are not the offender but this a serial rape case . Your statement , although professionally and eloquently written is arguably aimed at clouding people’s judgement particularly your fans as a public figure period!

    • Zee

      November 24, 2014 at 1:27 pm

      How is her statement “shouting down” the victims of rape? Like you said, silence is golden and you should have taken your own advice.

    • Shade

      November 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm

      I disagree totally, everyone is entitled to their opinion just like Stephanie did . So please let the girl be …..

    • Blessmyheart

      November 24, 2014 at 1:29 pm

      Really? I didn’t get any of that from her statement. “I have also encouraged and assured the alleged victim of my stance against rape and applaud her for her bravery to upset the culture of silence, in Nigeria; even as I accord deference and patiently wait for the criminal justice system to determine the guilt or innocence of my brother.”

      She’s only saying blogs should not make the story all about her. I doubt that can be avoided by the way.

    • Missmolly

      November 24, 2014 at 1:43 pm

      Oga/madam “Just Wow” did you not read what she wrote? This case is now in Nigeria’s criminal justice system as the accused awaits arraignment. I have also encouraged and assured the alleged victim of my stance against rape and applaud her for her bravery to upset the culture of silence, in Nigeria; even as I accord deference and patiently wait for the criminal justice system to determine the guilt or innocence of my brother.”
      In what way did she attempt to cloud anyone’s judgment? All she did was to ask for her name not to be dragged in mud. Please be reasonable.

    • Open Sesame

      November 24, 2014 at 2:30 pm

      @Just wow, I empathize with you seeing from the other post about this that you were raped as a teenager. I hope you heal and can move on if you haven’t already done so.

      It’s not surprising to vent at anyone close to an alleged rapist given your experience. One rapist is just as had as another but except his family knew about this and did nothing, I’m not sure what you’re blaming Stephanie for here. She clearly stated her stance which is exactly the same as yours. But in your pain you’re reading something else.

      If anything, take this as proof that justice will come to the one who abused you just like it will to Okereke if he is guilty. Justice isn’t always public but it will come nonetheless.

    • TA

      November 24, 2014 at 2:46 pm

      @ Open Sesame thank you for your wise words.

  32. baboushka

    November 24, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    My respect for this woman just wen ten notches higher!

  33. adelegirl

    November 24, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    Well done to Stephanie for issuing this statement. She could have kept silent, ignoring it but didn’t. My respect for her has risen. Woman of Integrity!

  34. deedee

    November 24, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    Nawaooooo i wonder what you read cos am sure its not this article, i guess you read yours backward sha

  35. Favoured

    November 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    This is how issued should be address. Thump up Stephanie.

  36. word

    November 24, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Can Tiwa Savage’s PR people get in here and recieve tutorials please. Not dt image laundering they do: when a situation is black, they come n pour Jik on it, like the world is blind. Can they just read this simple english and learn.

  37. jojo

    November 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    Steph, I am proud of you and pray for you. Real class.
    Unu people stop trashing her name to sell your papers and blogs.

    Rape is a terrible thing. Count yourself lucky if you haven’t experienced it. Turn the person in as soon as possible so you can start healing and get justice too

  38. Olabisi Badmus

    November 24, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    The Arionala’s girls family should come with thier own statement too. So that every where will be full of uneccessary grammar! Nobody ever said Stephanie is the culprit. Please take your serial rapist brother to MFM. Or Abroad for professional help and post it on your page as part of your charitable work . And before all your legions of fan start venting “stephenieities ” just like lady gaga fans “little monsters “. Nobody is blaming you but we all know that justice may not be served …….

    • Mama

      November 24, 2014 at 5:25 pm

      Sad people like u read and still do not comprehend….. If justice fails whose fault? She had to come out cos all the blogs are using her name as the most known person in the family….. Even if he drops his aunties name we have no proof that this family has supported his evil ways….. Even those of you who have all shades of black sheeps in your families will come here and be pointing insultive fingers at her cos she is a celebrity…… There is no where she has supported wha her brother did in this response like some ignorant person here is saying…..even if the family finds him guilty only the court will decide that for the public…

    • dont care!

      November 24, 2014 at 6:24 pm

      Why should justice fail. People have black sheeps in their family and should they all be called out. I am sure this must be you Stephanie Okereke!
      I am neutral on this issue. You are public figure and there is no way you will release a public statement and not expect mixed reactions. Some will buy your story and others wont.

  39. Olabisi Badmus

    November 24, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    fans jareh…… lol

  40. nene

    November 24, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    to behonest, i don’t see the need for a pr statement from her! she’s just drawing more attention to the case and herself. but it was a good pr statement though.

  41. Iffy

    November 24, 2014 at 9:28 pm

    Really? I mean was that a response to the allegations or a platform to broadcast the launch of her film? Chai…

    • Iamme

      November 25, 2014 at 1:03 pm

      How on earth did her statement strike you in anyway as a platform to broadcast the launch of her film? Stephanie is smart enough to come up with ways to create awareness or publicisize the launch of her new film when the need arises. This statement was not for that. Plus, this statement was not in response to the allegations, but a statement that applauds the outspokenness of a rape victim (especially as it is less often reported due to its stigmatization), and also a statement asking media people/bloggers to refrain from using her name and pictures in the story for reading traffic as the crime was allegedly committed by her brother and not her.

  42. Chinagorom Martin

    November 25, 2014 at 2:44 am

    Oh, she is graceful, Stephanie my Stephanie.

  43. Renzy

    December 2, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    GOD is indeed the allseeing GOD…..I have had an encounter with this man in his house in maryland and I still marvel at how GOD brought me out of his house unraped…….I pray justice is served for the sake of his victims.

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