Dr Ayodeji Adewakun, 44, and her husband Abimbola Adewakun, 48, have been accused of trafficking a Nigerian woman to the UK and making her work 18-hour shifts. They are alleged to have paid the accused, Iyabo Olatunji, £20 a week and beat her when she demanded a higher wage.
Olatunji, 37, told Southwark Crown Court on Monday that she was also made to work hard everyday cleaning their house before staying late and cooking the couple’s dinner.
The couple allegedly persuaded Olatunji who was working as a secretary for a local government in Nigeria to leave her home and job in Nigeria to look after their two young children at their three-bedroom home in Erith, south east London, in 2004.
In a contract signed in 2004, DailyMail UK that Ayodeji promised her £450 per month in a contract signed by the couple and the victim which also set out a range of terms and conditions of her employment. The contract reportedly also included caring for the couple’s two young children at an agreed time and days.
However, Olatunji denied she was made aware of any duties expected of her outside of her babysitting role and added that she had never even had a bank account set up for her to receive her wages into. She claims she came to the UK with just five Nigerian Naira in her pocket and was not even treated to a t-shirt she liked during a family holiday to Euro Disney.
She claims she was made to sleep at midnight and forced to get up at 6am every morning to get the children fed and ready for school. She recalled being slapped three times by the doctor when she asked for more money to cater for herself.
The first occasion, coinciding with her birthday, was documented in a diary she kept, which also detailed the strict payment schedule. Jurors heard the babysitter wrote:
Aunty fight with me today. She slapped my face twice. The day I will never forget in my life. The first time in history that somebody has slapped my face.
Olatunji also claimed she was assaulted again twice before she reported her situation to Ayodeji’s mother.
Ayodeji and her husband both denied obtaining services by deception and trafficking a person into the UK for exploitation.
The trial continues.