Alhaji Dahiru Bala (55), father of 25-years old Inuwa Dahiru Bala (otherwise known as Yunusa aka Yellow) who abducted 14-year old Ese Rita Oruru spoke from Tofa, his village in Kura Local Government Area of Kano state, Wednesday, insisting that his son committed no crime and should be set free.
Alhaji Bala told The Nation reporters who traveled about 40 kilometres from Kano to Tofa village that Ese voluntarily followed his son out of love and affection.
“The girl fell in love with my son and followed my son. Let them release my son because he has not committed any crime by following his heart,” he added.
However, Alhaji Yusuf Suleiman (50), Dagaci Tofa (Village Head of Tofa) faulted Inuwa’s action for keeping the girl after the instruction of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Sanusi Muhammad 11, describing the action as unIslamic.
Alhaji Yusuf Suleiman also gave a graphic account how the girl was converted to Islam and was taken to the Emir of Kano for endorsement, but added that the Emir refused to endorse the marriage because the girl (Ese) in question was a teenager and could not decide for herself without the consent of her parents.
According to the Village Head of Tofa town: “What I know about the story is that there was a time that boy, Inuwa Dahiru Bala, a native of this village, came with the girl in question whom I learnt her name is Ese Oruru. They came here sometime last year; and Inuwa brought her to me.
“When he told me what he wanted to do—that is, getting married to the girl; I told him I don’t have the power to join them as husband and wife. So, I decided to take them to the Hakimi (District Head) of Tofa.
“The Hakimi took the issue to the Liman (Islamic scholar) of our village where the conversion of the girl from Christianity to Islam was performed. From there, we headed straight to the Emir’s Palace to intimate him on the development; but unfortunately, the Emir was not around at that time. We met the then Wambai Kano (Abbas Sanusi, now Galadiman Kano).
“The Wambai Kano instructed us to take them to Sharia’ah Commission; so, at Sharia’ah Commission, the issue was further discussed—the parents of the girl were invited to Sharia’ah Commission. The parents wanted to take the girl back to Bayelsa, but they could not.
“Then, the next day being a Friday, we went back to the Emir’s Palace and we were asked to come back on Monday (after the weekend). When we came back to the Emir’s Palace that Monday, we waited a long time for representatives from the Sharia’ah Commission, but they delayed us to the extent that the Emir, Sanusi Muhammad 11, got tired and left for other official engagements.
“So, when the Emir left, the Police who came along with the parents of the girl had no choice than to leave for other official duties. However, the Emir delegated power to Wambai Kano who spoke on behalf of the Emirate Council and informed us that the girl being less than 16 years of age should be given out for marriage without the consent of her parents.
“Having been informed on the position of the Emirate Council on the issue, Wambai Kano gave us a letter stating the position of the Emirate Council and instructed us to deliver it to the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in charge of Zone 1, including Inuwa and the girl. We delivered the letter to the AIG and gave him a message that the Emir instructed that the girl should be repatriated to Bayelsa where her parents lives. So, after delivering the letter and the two children to the AIG, that was where I stopped playing any role, believing that the AIG will handle the matter as instructed by the Emir.
“However, I must say that Tofa people are not happy with this development and we condemn the action of our son, Inuwa. Now, I must tell you that it was wrong for Inuwa to have brought the girl back to this village after the Emir of Kano has given his verdict that the girl be repatriated back to her people. It is not in our character to do this kind of thing.
“So, I must declare that Inuwa’s character was unIslamic and totally unacceptable by the people of Tofa village who have high regard to our religion, constituted authorities and the revered throne of Sarkin Kano, Sanusi Muhammad 11. Inuwa has cheated the people of Tofa; he has smeared our name and the name of Kano state, even that of Nigeria.
“My advice to the young ones is that whenever they want to get married from any part of the country, they should properly follow the channels, tradition, customs and norms of the people. The reunion of the girl with the parents is the best option in this issue and Tofa people align themselves with this decision, because since the Emir’s verdict on the issue, all that we have been fighting for is that the girl be returned back to her parents.”