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PUNCH LAUNCHES ‘FREE ESE’ CAMPAIGN: Abduction, forced marriage of 14-year-old Ese shock Nigerians

Jonathan Zovoe and Simon Ejembi
The story of 14-year-old Ese Oruru and the travail of her parents over the past six months have caused an outrage on the social media and beyond.
In August 2015, Ese, then 13, was abducted by one Yinusa and taken to Kano, where he converted her to Islam and married her.
Ese’s mother, Mrs. Rose Oruru, a food vendor in Opolo, Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa, said Yinusa was a longstanding customer.
Since August 12 when her parents made the shocking discovery, trips to Kano, the involvement of the police and efforts to get the Emir of Kano, Mallam Lamido Sanusi, at whose palace the girl is believed to be held to resolve the matter and ensure the return of the 14-year-old to her parents have failed.
While her mother was told that Ese had converted to Islam and, therefore, was no longer her daughter, her father was told that his daughter was an 18-year-old adult and not 14, hence she was capable of making decisions for herself.
News of the family’s travails as a result of the sordid development has angered many Nigerians with many of them calling for her immediate release and the prosecution of those involved.
Here are some reactions to the story:
Oladele Oduola
What a country, what a religion, what a poor family? Is the governor deaf, or just less concerned because of the status of those concerned? This is disheartening.
Say the truth
No rage and uproar should be too much. No one should count on the Inspector General of Police to do anything because he is too scared and desperate to keep his job. Emir Sanusi himself marries them young and that is why he will encourage his subjects to do the same. Ese remains a minor by the Constitution of Nigeria. In a sane nation, rights agencies, women right groups/ societies, civil organisations, responsible Bayelsa State government, the IGP, Presidency and the Emirate will be interested in setting this minor and captive free. To them, it is another convert captured. The parents should also go into fasting and prayers by fire for deliverance because the girl would have been hypnotised by these godless abductors. This is the reason for suspicion and lack of tolerance among Nigerians. The more reason host communities and people will be hostile to their settlers. Those that support this atrocity are insensitive to the feelings and sufferings of others and that is the biggest crime of all.
Motunraking Henry
Do your findings about Islamic marriage. Islamically, you cannot marry a girl without the parents’ consent and member from your locality being the witness to the union. What they are doing is nothing but wickedness, and the only cause to it is the government system.
There is nothing we cannot hear in this country, imagine this? Even the Emir can’t be straight on the matter; even police could not take action and get the girl out. The parents even saw the girl brought in a black SUV, why didn’t they allow them to take the girl right away? And they were being denied access to their child saying she has been converted to Islam. Is this how somebody’s child can cease to be hers just like that? How can you marry someone’s child without the knowledge of the parents and the so-called Emir and police can’t do anything about it? A child underage for that matter.
Mama Kay
Parents need to take care of their children. Sending young attractive girls to sell food to men is a major risk in Nigeria where law enforcement is virtually nonexistent.
These young girls because of poverty fall prey to men who give them N100 here and there.
I have seen the case of an undergraduate, who fell victim to a driver that was giving her money, and despite protest from her family married the young man.
Parents need to be wary of sending their children to hawk because there are preys everywhere.
May God help the family in their quest for a solution and I hope when they eventually find their daughter it is not too late.
This is disgraceful to say the least, how can anyone abduct a 13-year-old girl and term that to be elopement, when the girl in question is underage; who certainly cannot give informed consent.
I hope you can see many reasons why we should continue crying and yelling about Chibok girls… If the Emir and Kano State government could support this kind of madness…what else? Chibok girls have been converted to Islam and married off…shikena… Case closed.
Please, is this story a joke or comedy from African Magic? I want to believe it is indeed a joke or comedy. Even the Emir of Kano, well educated, respectable, articulate will not be party to this comedy. I am sure we have not descended so low to these absurdities. It must just be a joke! Can you imagine 13-years-old eloping with a man? And the authorities will be so shamelessly trying to profer excuses when the shameless boy should have been arrested and the minor should have been returned to her parents with apologies? I have a feeling this story is one sided if not a comedy. We have not socially and culturally lost our senses of morality and descended so despicably this low to absurdities.
I feel so ashamed of the Bayelsa States Police Boss saying it’s not abduction but elopement of a 13-year-old? Shame on the Bayelsa State government that can’t even defend the rights of citizens; shame on the Bayelsa Police boss who seemed more like a dunce for just stating it is an elopement probably because he’s a fellow Muslim; and shame on the Emir of Kano, who could allow such injustice just because of religion. Finally, how could a guy that sold his keke in Bayelsa be this powerful? Just that the Police are already biased; if not, there’s a lot we’re not aware of yet. More will unfold if only the Police were to do their job.
Bring Back Our Girls should fight for Bring Back Our ESE. They should launch the campaign at the Emir’s palace. This is likened to Boko Haram’s abduction of the Chibok girls and illegally approved by the Sharia Council and Emirate council. Shame on them all. PUNCH, keep this up, Ese must be returned to her family in Bayelsa.