PROSTITUTION is as old as man himself but it only keeps developing new dimensions by the day. And a lot of people have attributed unemployment and high poverty level in the country to the alarming rate of the social ill which has fast spread across the country, especially Lagos state where majority of the prostitutes relocate to on a daily basis.
ENCOMIUM Weekly went round some parts of Lagos where some of the prostitutes usually file out in the late evening, attracting their potential clients with all sorts of skimpy and body revealing dresses. And men who wouldn’t control their libido usually fall prey to the commercial sex hawkers who are always on red alert.
We, however, had a chat with some of the prostitutes who disclosed to us their mode of operation, charges and why they veered into the illicit trade.
‘There’s no fixed price for sex’ – JENNIFER
One Miss Jennifer, an indigene of Delta State said, “I got into prostitution not by intention, and that’s about five years ago when I was just 18. Since, I have never done any other thing to survive apart from prostitution.”
On how she ventured into the abominable act, she reacted, “I came to Lagos with my aunty in 2011, with the hope of learning a vocation, but my hope was dashed when my aunty said she couldn’t help again. And I reasoned with her because she is a widow with five children and she only engages in petty trading.
“So, I had no choice than to start looking for club houses around Ikeja area. I was lucky to get one and I have a friend there. That’s how I started going out with men. Later, we both got a room in one hotel in Ikeja where we do our stuff.
“But now, I have moved to Ogba and I have an accommodation of my own in Obawole area. Anytime I feel like, I go out at night. I don’t have permanent customers but I have a boyfriend.”
On the prices she charges, she said it all depends, “There is no fixed price for sex. No prostitute can tell you she has a fixed price. It all depends on the circumstance you find yourself and the type of person you’re dealing with. That’s as far as I am concerned.
“At times, you may be lucky to meet a man to lodge with, and if he is impressed by your style in bed and all that, he may even double your pay. And if otherwise, he may change the story and you may even end up losing if you drag anything with him. Some men may act funny at times when they don’t enjoy the value for their money.”
Asked about the likelihood of being charmed by their clients, she said, “It happens but most of us who are experienced are also prepared for that. Ritualists at times patronize us but immediately they notice you’re also spiritually fortified, they turn their back.
“We also don’t want to die young. If not for poverty and poor family background, do you think most of us love the job? But it’s usually very difficult for you to get out of it. Most of us consult pastors, prophets, herbalists and Muslim clerics for spiritual fortification.”
Speaking further, Jennifer said, “But one thing is that prostitution is very profitable only that people are condemning it. You won’t be surprised at times that most people that condemn us openly also patronize us at night.
“It’s very lucrative if you know how to play the game. As far as I am concerned, I charge minimum of N4,000 for a short rest and I make not less than N30,000 per day. I make sure whoever wants to sleep with me is protected. And if I must pass the night with you, it has to be a hotel I am familiar with. I don’t follow people to any place I don’t know. And I don’t allow any man to sleep with me without condom. I meet at least four men in a day before meeting the last one which will take me on till the day break.”
‘I’m building a house in my village’ – Anah Baba
Another prostitute who simply identified herself as Anah Baba said, “I have been in the trade for over six years. And I don’t think I can quit. There is nothing else I can do that can fetch me money like prostitution. Although, I sell recharge cards during the day, I go out around 9 p.m to hustle with my friends on Allen Avenue. I make more money during the weekends than week days.
“I am educated but I can’t find any job. That’s why I ventured into prostitution. I enjoy sleeping with men that can challenge me to greater things. I mean, a man that will burn out the passion in me as a woman apart from paying me good money.
“I make at least N70,000 per week. At times, they pay me in dollars. Now, for your information, I am building a house in my village. I send money to my mom every month. But I am planning to open a boutique when I make more money before the end of this year. But that doesn’t mean I will quit prostitution.”
‘I charge N3,000 for short time and N10,000 for all night’ – Rose
We also visited one of the popular fun spots in Abule Egba, Lagos axis where we also had a chat with two of the commercial sex workers.
According to Rose who claimed to be a student of one of the tertiary institutions in the Eastern part of the country, the trade has become the only alternative for young girls nowadays, especially those who are catering for themselves.
“My brother, things are hard o. You want my service or you just want to know the price? If you want price I can tell you, don’t worry.
“On weekends, I charge higher than every other period because that’s when more people patronize us. So, on weekends, I am usually for the highest bidder. Men run after my good shape. That’s my selling point. So, it gives me the opportunity to jack up my price. But it all depends on the situation I find myself. The least I take for a short time is N3,000 while I charge not less than N10,000 over night. But before I can go for till daybreak service, it will be around 1 a.m. By that time, I should have made enough money from short time runs.
“At times, I make an average of N80,000 in a week. But I don’t come here all the time. I only come when we are on holiday. I am in final year. I have decided to quit as soon as I get a man I will settle down with.”
‘I will soon repent’ – Blessing
Another of her colleagues simply addressed as Blessing also explained how she got into the shameful profession, adding that it’s better than armed robbery. “I think being a prostitute is by far better than being an armed robber. I am only using my endowment to get what I want. And it’s paying off. I go out at will and no man can lure me into sex with any amount unless I am willing to.
“I came to Lagos about four years ago with a friend of mine and up till now, we still live together somewhere around Ishaga.
“Nobody in our compound knows we’re into prostitution because we don’t allow men to visit us except our boyfriends. It’s profitable but morally it’s condemnable. I will soon repent because one day I will also like to marry. I am only doing it for a while. I want to get involved in buying and selling shoes and bags.”