Cornucopia: Jubilation as Odogwu converts to Islam, By Odogwu Emeka Odogwu

Posted by News Express | 21 May 2018 | 7,019 times

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•Odogwu Emeka Odogwu

For converting me, Odogwu Christian Chukwuemeka Nwannedimma Odogwu, a full-blooded Christian, to Islam was so easy, effortless; and already there was jubilation in almost all Muslim cities across the nation. Rubbish!

Why convert me to a religion that I personally ran away from the North, particularly Jigawa State, because of its violence-oriented belief? Why convert me to a religion that only loves it when a Christian converts to Islam, and not the other way around? Why convert me to a religion that uses all at its disposal to suppress freedom of worship and ruin the efforts of others, without batting an eyelid?

Why should anyone, especially my love from Jigawa State – where I ran away by mid-night after challenging some youths burning churches at random in my very presence – convert me to Islam? Why shouldn’t I convert her to Christianity? What a religion!

Why should there be a controversy that a Muslim girl, Nabila Umar Sanda, 19, daughter of a traditional title-holder in Biu, Borno State, at her own will converted to Christianity in Jos, Plateau State, when hundreds of Christian girls have been forcefully converted to Islam, and impregnated without qualms, even when they are minors still under their parents watch? What a country of contradictions? Is another religious war in the offing?

Why would officials of the State Security Service (SSS) arrest the girl’s male friend, Engr Simput Eagles Dafup, in Plateau State, on the orders of the girl’s father that his daughter has been abducted in Abuja on December 1, 2017?

Why didn’t such arrest come the way of Ese Oruru, Ifesinachi Ani and Rose Peter Chukwu, among others, that were forcefully converted and impregnated severally? Nabila isn’t yet pregnant, and the young chap did the right thing by informing the elders of his church.

How can Nabila, who finished from Air Force Comprehensive College, Jos and a 200-Level student of Mass Communication at the Bingham University in Nasarawa State, be compared with the outrage we witnessed in Bayelsa, when a 13-year Christian girl, Ese Rita Oruru, was kidnapped, raped, impregnated and converted by Yinusa, who fled Bayelsa to Kano, and the emir and all-powerful Muslims in the Nigerian Police and DSS connived to rubbish the case? Ese must have delivered and shamed, but Yinusa is free? Besides, she was so brain-washed with a new name, Aisha Chuwas, that she doesn’t even know her mother, Rose Ese, again. To add salt to the abominable injury, Rose was told by the chief of a village in Tufa, Kura Local Government Area of Kano State, that Ese had been converted to Islam, married and renamed Aisha, and that she was no longer her daughter.

Same fate happened to a 16-year old, SS-2 student of Government Secondary School, Apo Resettlement, Ifesinachi Ani, from Amaechi Awkunanaw in Enugu South Local Government Area of Enugu, who was abducted and taken to unknown destination.

Ebonyi girl, 17-year-old beautiful Rose Peter Chukwu, was abducted, impregnated severally, and forcefully converted from Christianity to Islam in 2010, when she was in Kwara, by one Alhaji Olatunji Sulyman, said to be the current spokesman of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Kwara State chapter. FCT Police Command allowed her traducers to kidnap her three-year-old boy, leaving her with her four-year-old daughter. The list is endless. But in all of the foregoing and similar cases, in which did the security agents react positively, rather than aiding and abetting the kidnappers? But, if it is Christian, hell will be let loose. What an irony of fate!

Why harassing Pastor Jerry Datimin in Jos, who knew nothing of Nabila’s wish, but by chance came into the situation? The Holy Bible does not encourage abduction and impregnation of people’s children to convert them to Christianity. Conversely, Islam does!There are litany of examples where young under-age bright Christian girls have been abducted, impregnated and forcefully converted against their wish and that of their parents, often with intimidation and harassment of the teenagers’ families by government security agencies. Why?

Nabila had converted to Christianity while at Bingham University and had met Dafup, a lecturer, in Ghana four years ago, on a flight to Dubai. According to the pastor, Nabila had recently reconnected with Dafup who was visiting Jos for the Christmas break, and expressed her intentions to fully convert to Christianity.

Perhaps, for being a Christian, the pastor was abused, insulted and harassed and, probably, lucky to still be alive.

His words: “The DSS stormed my house, beat me up and assaulted my wife, daughter and eight-month-old baby. They picked Nabila from my house. At the moment, Simput Dafup and Daniel Hassan, a taxi driver whose vehicle Miss Nabila boarded from Abuja to Jos, are nowhere to be found. No member of their respective families has been contacted.

“After they assaulted my family, I took the matter to the Plateau State Administrative Secretary of JNI, Sheikh Abdulazeez Yusuf, who was unhappy with the development and arranged a meeting with the SSS. Even at the SSS office, when they asked why I didn’t take the girl to the police station, it was the JNI that answered by telling them that we have been working together to resolve such issues, without involving security.”

Dafup’s mother, Lydia Istifanus Dafup, 64, said her only son had been tortured for two weeks, before he was taken away. She pleaded for his release.

She recalled: “My son, Simput, an engineer, was on Monday, January 8, brutalised, tortured and whisked away from his residence in Jos by men we suspect were from the DSS, for allegedly converting one Miss Nabila Umar Galadima from Islam to Christianity.

“The heavily-armed men, who stormed the residence of my son in five vehicles, blocked everywhere and assaulted people around the community. I am worried now because, as I talk to you, I don’t know the whereabouts of my son.

“Nobody has contacted me or any member of the family to inform us about where my son is. I know that some people that were found in the residence, who were also assaulted and brutalised with my son, were taken to Plateau State Command of the DSS.

“I am worried because these people told me that they didn’t see my son there. The men who whisked my son away put a mask on him and took him to an unknown destination. As a mother and a widow, I am worried about his safety.

“The assault, brutalisation and subsequent abduction of my son is horrible and uncalled for. He does not know anything about the said conversion, but he is suffering the punishment of what he does not know. I want my son released alive.”

Nabila confided in Simput that she wanted to convert to Christianity, but Simput cautioned her against such, saying her action might not be welcomed by her parents. At the time, she was 14 years old and a student of Air Force Girls College, Jos. But why troubling Simput rather than commending him for his maturity and religious tolerance, especially when Nabila willingly converted as an adult and not as an underage?

Remember, Simput said he was confused when the 19-year-old Nabila burst into his residence. But he later took her to one Evangelist Jerry Datim, who he believed was in a better position to handle the delicate matter, which could snowball into a religious crisis.

Evangelist Datim, sat Nabila down and interrogated her on why she wanted to abandon Islam for Christianity: she insisted on becoming a Christian and face the consequences.

And as true Christian, Datim hurriedly contacted the leadership of Jama’atu Nasiru Islam (JNI), Plateau State, because of the understanding between the group and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), whenever issues of conversion arise from both faiths. This is Christianity, religion of love?

In Britain, Aisha Bhutta from Pakistan converted to Islam at age of 17, even though she made her decision at age 16. She converted her parents, family and 30 friends. She met her husband Mohammed Bhutta as a customer in their shop at age 10. Reportedly, Mohammed’s parents were against their marriage because Aisha now 32 was seen as a Western Woman

Aisha recalled: “My husband and I worked on my mum and dad, telling them about Islam, and they saw the changes in me, like I stopped answering back.”

Her mother, Marjory Rogers, changed her name to Sumayyah and became a devout Muslim. And the story continues.

It was jubilation and noted as the right thing across the world, and it became a hit story. On the contrary, what would have happened if it was a Christian man that converted a Muslim girl to know Jesus Christ? Be it in Britain or elsewhere? Would it be seen as the right thing to do and respect their freedom of worship?

While it is an open celebration for Christians to be converted to Islam in Nigeria, it is a taboo for a Muslim to be converted to Christianity. Why is it so? If Fulani herdsmen or men of the Boko Haram kill Christians, it becomes a celebration as those who don’t know God have been slaughtered according to Islamic injunction or so we were fed; but when same Fulani herdsmen or Boko Haram kill Muslims by error, it becomes an issue?

But, in Nigeria, heads must roll and people must die for converting a Muslim to Christianity. What a religious ruse! What a religious fallacy and fanaticism! If not me, it is nothing; but if it is me, it is everything. That’s rubbish! Christians must wake up and stop this religious intolerance and fight our common enemy, now that it is still day.

•Odogwu Emeka Odogwu, editor/publisher , blogger, social media entrepreneur, can be reached @;

Source: News Express

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