Sex for grades

Sex For Grades: Is it Entrapment? – Manasseh Azure Answers

Popular investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni has added his voice to the Sex for Grade video by BBC Africa Eye by asking is it was an entrapment.

In a Facebook post sighted by questioned the method employed by BBC in their latest Sex for Grade investigation. He stated that when officials are caught in scandals, they then accuse the journalist of entrapment. A typical reference to such a case was the Anas Expose which Kwasi Nyantakyi was caught in some bad practices.  He explained;

#SexForGrades: Is it Entrapment?

One of Professor Ransford Gyampo’s defences against the BBC’s Sex for Grades undercover investigation is that he was entrapped. I have also read some social media comments suggesting same. Some have even suggested that the dressing and looks of the ladies involved in the investigation could be a reason for the responses and behaviours from the lecturers.

This is not the first time journalists have been accused of entrapment and it will certainly not be the last. But this BBC documentary is a classic case study to examine the issue of entrapment and learn lessons because of the subject of the investigation — sex.

Also Read: University of Ghana interdicts two of it Lecturers captured in Sex For grade scandal

If sex is offered as a trap, only few can escape. Those caught may not be morally bankrupt. They may just have fallen at a time a when their libidinal immune system is weak. Both men and women have periods when their drive for sex heightens and there are times it is the last thing they want to hear. A sexually disciplined person might fall for temptation at the wrong time or at the wrong place. A sex pervert, on the other hand, might survive a sex trap when they face the trap at the time they have no drive at all for it. Because of the nature of sex, the line between sex entrapment and a sting investigative operation to expose sexual harassment can be thiner than the edge of a circumcision blade. But does what we saw in the BBC documentary, especially in relation to Prof. Gyampo, amount to entrapment?

Also Read: BBC Releases Full 54 Minutes Video of Sex for Grade Expose

1.THE SETTING OF THE ENGAGEMENTS: In entrapment, the place of engaging the person is key. In undercover investigation, it is advised that you deal with the person in their natural setting, an environment that is not unusual and one that will not elicit a different behaviour from their usual setting. A university professor meets with his or her students on campus and, probably in his or her office. This is usual. If the lady doing the investigation knew that the professor was in a hotel in Akosombo attending a conference and she showed up unannounced and bumped into his hotel room, with scooped up breasts jutting provocatively like unripe avocado, whatever happened between them could be an entrapment even if it does not absolve the professor of wrong doing. But that was not what happened in the video.

Again, when Prof. Gyampo called and wanted to meet the supposed student in her house, she suggested a public place. Here again, it takes away the element of entrapment as far as the venue or place of engagement is concerned. The conduct of the professor at a public restaurant could not be said to have been influenced by a venue one is predisposed to such behaviour.

2. HIGH HEELS: In part of the video, Prof. Gyampo is heard asking the lady to wear high-heeled shoes when coming to him. It is unclear why he wanted the student to dress in a certain way but I know some men are aroused by women in high heels. It appears the lady was not enticing enough so her outfit needed to be enhanced.

3. “FORMAL” Prof. Gyampo is also heard in the video talking about the fact that the student was too formal. I have had young people, including females, approach me for mentorship. A mentor-mentee or teacher-student relationship ought to be formal, until after a long time when familiarity sets in, but even with that there are often limits to the informality. A lady with an ulterior motive who wants to lead a teacher or mentor on to a relationship does not take long to show their true colours. They will start complimenting your looks even when you know you do not come close to what they are talking about. They will start telling you how lucky your wife is and how they wish to marry someone just like you. For this character in the investigation to remain too formal to the dislike of the teacher suggests she wasn’t seductive in her approach, unless there is something more we do not know. If her formality were seductive, someone interested in a romantic relationship with her would not complain.

4. INITIATION: The initiator of the meeting on the Sunday, which led to the mall encounter was the lecturer. In typical cases of entrapment, the one doing the entrapment calls the shots and leads the way out of the usual setting of the meetings, but in this case, the student appeared laid back.

5. A DECENT GIRL: One of the qualities of the lady as extolled by the professor in the video is decency. The Lady is not shown but a lady who sets out to seduce a man for sex might not fit this description. When some people advise women to stay out of sexual harassment and rape, they often ask them to appear decent. A lady who goes to sell sex will ordinarily be described in these terms.

The subject of the documentary is very delicate and getting someone to fall sexually could have been seriously influenced by the characters. Watching the documentary, however, it appears the investigators and producers allowed the alleged perpetrators of the sex offences to do what they would have done in their natural environment. If they had gone to the lecturers’ homes or hotels dressed like the spicy nocturnal ladies at Lagos Avenue in East Legon and recorded their encounters, the lecturers could have claimed entrapment, irrespective of how weak that defence might be. But the approach was professional and provides lessons for investigative journalists that we can get the alleged offenders to commit themselves without unduly influencing the outcome of their behaviour.”