The ongoing marriage crisis of Nollywood A-list actress Tonto Dikeh and her business tycoon husband Oladunni Olakunle Churchill continues to play out in the public domain with the couple publishing and engaging in mudslinging against each other. Unfortunately, their revelations are now getting sadder and sadder, especially since there is a child involved. Just this weekend, Media Room Hub published an interview Churchill granted to the news outlet where he engages in a point by point refutation of accusations made by Dikeh in an earlier interview granted to the same outlet.
As a recap in her interview and on numerous social media postings for weeks now, Dikeh claiming that she was speaking out in an effort to empower women, accused her husband of the following illustrative list:
1. Ongoing domestic violence in the relationship.
2. “Murderer of an unborn child”.
3. 419 fraud (white collar crime).
4. Cheating and transmitting sexually transmitted diseases to her.
5. Domestic violence in an instance that served as the final straw that made her take her child, and flee for her life with only the clothes on her back.
6. She claims she was the true breadwinner of the home (made most of the money) but lied to the public that he was the breadwinner on social media to make him look good.
7. She claims Churchill physically abused their son who just turned one.
8. She claims he is a deadbeat father and made no attempts to see his son, despite his ample accessibility through her staff to do so.
9. She claims she, at some point, had to run to the Ghanaian embassy naked as a result of one of Churchill’s domestic violence episodes against her.
10. She claimed he was now her ex-husband although she produces no evidence that she is divorced nor the court’s ruling as to custody and visitation.
Following her explosive interview, Ghana police responded in a video interview that appeared suspicious. The police claimed that Dikeh lied and never ran to the Ghanaian embassy naked. Instead, she was arrested for vandalizing Churchill’s property while they were engaged.The police claim Dikeh had destroyed over $20,000 worth of Churchill’s property, was drunk, assaulted persons in his home, and pulled a gun on one of his house helps.
Perhaps because the public did not seem to buy the Ghanaian police’s story, Churchill, this weekend, has now shared his side of the story with the public. His motive is that he wants to “clear (his) name” and that of his company. He paints a very different picture of the facts:
1. He denies all allegations of domestic violence against her.
2. He claims she has an uncontrollable anger (fits of rage) that has resulted in 66 million Naira worth of damages to his property.
3. He admits he had STD but denies transferring any to his wife because according to him, that was when he was in hi secondary (high) school days. He doesn’t say what type of STD he had.
4. He claims Dikeh assaulted his mother in his mother’s own house. He shared a video of scenes showing some damages from the incident at his mom’s home: broken glass, blood-stained floor etc. On the video, you can hear his mother saying she is fearful for his life in her native language, Yoruba. He also claims her best friend, a male, was present and crying because it appeared he had never seen her in such state of violence.
5. He claims her allegation of leaving their matrimonial home with nothing was a lie. He says he was traveling when she moved, and she moved all of her belongings to an undisclosed location.
6. He claims just a week and a half ago, he made his ninth attempt, through her family members and his, to reconcile. He shared videos from the meeting where she looks happy.
7. He denies her cheating allegations with a girl Dikeh claims is at the center of their brouhaha.
8. He claims her fits of rage are so intense that it is impossible to even attempt any kind of physical abuse towards her because he and those around him are concerned for their safety. He claims you will need at least six people to restrain her because her actions are almost demonic like and highly energized.
9. He claims she assaulted his younger brother.
10. He claims she has a long history of substance abuse, and during the course of their marriage regularly abused drugs which are the reasons she often got into those fits of rage.
These and many more claims are contained in his video interview.
These two have lost credibility. On both sides, their stories do not add up. While it is possible to believe Dikeh was physically abused in the relationship, it is also very possible to believe she does have a problem with uncontrollable anger because we have seen it displayed publicly way before her marriage. Despite believing these two things, there are many holes in their stories. For example, On Dikeh’s end, what mother who claims she loves her child as much as Dikeh says she does, would want to expose him to a father that beats him up? He is only an infant!
On Churchill’s end, if you don’t know Dikeh’s location, how is it that you can meet with her, and record her so jovial with her family members et. al. How is it that you have someone in her inner circle to monitor and give you updates about her?
I believe, at this point, that these two are attention hungry, ego driven, and I would dare say they almost enjoy this airing of their dirty laundry. Folks, there is a child involved here who the two claim is their world. These two are allegedly college educated, well traveled, have the resources to hire family law attorneys to file for divorce, split their assets, and sort out custody issues. They can also enter counseling to deal with the issue of co-parenting. Yet, they have refused and by their own volition, have brought all this mudslinging to the public and kept it on social media. I mean we are going on months now with this rubbish.
At this point, I’d say this is where the Lagos State child welfare department ought to get involved and at a minimum investigate the welfare of the child. What Dikeh and Churchill are doing is fast making them public nuisances, and shows they really need counseling and mental health services. They are not the first to fall in and out of love or end their union. That they refuse, after months of this nonsense on social media, to end this mess is an indication that the welfare of their child is not the priority. It can’t possibly be. They both need to check into rehab/counseling, separately, and they both need to work on resolving their issues and moving on for the sake of the child.
What a very, very sad mess.
Watch all relevant interviews
Ghanaian Police responds
Churchill’s recent interview (audio quality is poor)
Dikeh when the going was allegedly good in an interview published March 22, 2016