Neku Atawodi-Edun, who served as Country Director of Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), has hit out at a former General Manager of MEST, Aaron Fu, over sexual harassment allegations being piled on Tizeti boss Kendall Ananyi.
On June 2, 2020, Kelechi Udoagwu, a young woman who was being mentored by Ananyi in the past, accused the tech boss of sexually molesting her in broad daylight, while she was at MEST.
MEST is a technology foundation that trains and invests in African entrepreneurs.
As the story gained traction on social media on June 4, former MEST GM, Fu, tweeted the following at Udoagwu: “This cannot be allowed to happen - ever not to anyone, anywhere. I wish @MESTAfrica back then had been a place that encouraged you to speak out and take action. It’s a place where you should’ve been thriving - not attacked.”
Atawodi-Edun saw Fu’s tweet as being clever by half because Ananyi’s name had been carefully omitted.
And then she went for Fu without a second invitation. “You are distracting from the issue. Condemn the man by name. Do not make this a personal hagiography of your time at MEST. I condemn the disgusting act of Mr Kendall Ananyi of http://Wifi.com.ng ! We support Kelechi in being bold enough to speak out!”
Fu has apologised for his initial tweet. "Sorry guys - I realise this came across as self centred and apologise for the offence it might’ve caused.
"Kelechi your courage in coming forward is inspiring - I hope it pushes all of us to do better," he tweeted.
MEST had earlier issued a statement to say it has “zero tolerance for sexual harassment and assault at MEST and within the MEST community,’’ while promising to escalate action.
Tizeti also announced that it was launching an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment leveled against co-founder Ananyi.
“As a company, we have zero tolerance for harassment and outright condemn sexual harassment of any kind and empathize with any person who faces incidents of sexual harassment,” Tizeti’s statement read in parts.
The scandal involving the Tizeti owner comes in the wake of a renewed social media campaign against rape, after two young students were sexually assaulted and killed in separate Nigerian cities in the span of a week.