Nothing new under the sun? Maybe, but a mother who thinks money solves all life’s problems, and would do, possibly anything, to get it? This is also money ritual, because there are similarities – sell your ‘soul’ (or whatever they sell) to acquire wealth.
Maryam Abubakar, 39, has been selling her body and her soul to bandits, and she thought to introduce her daughters into the family business. It is not even sex work.
‘Sad’ is not the right reaction here. Horrified is more like it. And, because humanity is not a conversation yet in Nigeria, we may, as usual, read the story and move on to other activities for the day.
As some Nigerians argue, “the country’s citizens are not angry enough yet. When the anger reaches boiling point, her leaders will know.”
As reported by The Sun newspaper:
Maryam, arrested December 2021, who was the girlfriend of one of the bandits, claimed she was paid between ₦30,000 and ₦50,000 for a round of sex and could not resist such a generous offer.
“I was introduced into the kidnapping business by one of my brothers who introduced me to one of his friends, who later became my boyfriend. I decided to date him because my husband was not taking care of me, but this my boyfriend was doing that and gave me money. I visit him in the camp in the bush where we have sex.”
Note 1: The bandits’ camp is not top secret.
“While we dated, he told me to get girls for his colleagues because they are envious whenever they see us together. So, I introduced some girls from our village to them and after they visited them and spent the night with them, they told me they gave them ₦50,000, and I felt that my daughters too should make money also.”
Note 2: Locals aid the kidnapping and indiscriminate killing business.
“So I took two of my daughters to them. One is 17 and the other is 15, who started dating the bandits and were being paid for their services. That way burdens like feeding and clothing was no longer my business.”
Note 3: Trafficking is not a thing of the past.
“When they saw that I love my boyfriend and that I was loyal to the group (the bandits), they started sending me to do their shopping out of fear that the police and soldiers will arrest them.
“I take enough money to the market and even go to the chemist to buy drugs for whenever they are sick or have injuries. Apart from running errands for them, I also carry out surveillance, telling them who to kidnap to make money. Sometimes, I even arrange for them to kidnap some of the girls I bring for them as sex slaves and when their family members pay the ransom, they give me my own share.”
You are probably screaming in your head, or extremely worried that stories like Maryam’s are not new. You are also probably asking questions related to how exactly the country’s leadership is tackling issues of banditry and kidnapping. The answers come from the realities.
The story is from Zaria, Kaduna. What if we thought to gather similar stories from across Nigeria?
Omoleye Omoruyi… an apprentice web/game developer, novelist, sensitive to happenings in the world. Meet him @Lord_rickie on Twitter/Instagram