Ese’s abduction: Why the Emir of Kano has a case to answer

Ese’s abduction: Why the Emir of Kano has a case to answer

Editors note: The traumatizing ordeal the Bayelsa-born teenager, Miss Ese Oruru experienced at the hands of her alleged abductor, Yunusa, is a sorry tale. But the most sad part the tale is that when the Kanu emirate should have stepped up to the occasion and rescue this young girl it failed to do so.

Kess Ewubare highlights the pitfalls in the narrative by the Emir of Kano Malam Muhammadu Sanusi II, that he did his best to secure the girl's release. 

Ese’s abduction: Why the Emir of Kano has a case to answer
Ese Oruru was abducted from her Bayelsa home, moved to Kano and forced to marry one Yunusa Yellow.

The pains of losing a child 

No doubt, the case of Ese Oruru, the teenager who was abducted from her Bayelsa home and moved to Kano for a forced marriage to one Yunusa Yellow is indeed a pathetic story. Ese’s kidnap saga began in August 2015, when she was allegedly abducted in Opolo, Yenagoa local government area of Bayelsa state, by Yunusa, who hails from Kano state.

Ese who was 13 at the time of her alleged abduction was allegedly converted to Islam and betrothed to Yunusa.

There are different narratives about the Ese kidnap saga, depending on the side one stands, her parents claim the Emir of Kano Malam Muhammadu Sanusi II, played an active role in ordering the abduction of Ese and keeping her at his palace for almost a year.

They maintain that they had made trips to Kano since August 2015, where they unraveled the plights of their daughter. The parents said they have involved the police, but efforts to get the Emir of Kano, Lamido Sanusi, at whose palace the girl was believed to be held at the time to resolve the matter and ensure the return of the 14-year-old to them proved futile.

Ese's mother said she was told that Ese had converted to Islam and renamed Aisha, She said she was also told that Ese was no longer her daughter. Ese's father said he was told his daughter was an 18-year-old adult and not 14, hence she was capable of making decisions for herself.

His best wasn't good enough 

The above narrative is however in contrast to that of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II who blamed police and other para-military agencies over the failure to return Ese Oruru to her family.

In a Vanguard report of February 29, 2016, Sunusi II said:” I ordered Ese’s repatriation since September 2015 through the Assistant Inspector General of Police incharge of Zone 1, but to my surprise the issue is still hanging in between the sharia commission , Hisbah and the police.”

He maintained that the: “Police are those behind this delay. I have done my best for her and even directed for action, it’s unfortunate that the police are delaying this matter.”

The above comments by Sunusi II came after he ordered the state sharia commission to liaise with office of the assistant inspector general of police, zone 1 to commence process of returning the 14 years old teenager, Ese Oruru. This new order came 6 months after the teenager was cruelly and wickedly carried away and stolen from her parents, family and loved ones.

For someone who is well educated and who also happens to be a parent, the lame excuse that the police and other para-military agencies should be blamed over the failure to return Ese to her family since September 2015 is an insult to our intellect. Even more disturbing is the allegation from the girl’s parents that the abducted girl was housed in the emirs palace for some time.

While it would be improper to accuse the Emir Sanusi of culpability in the Ese kidnap saga, Emir Sanusi may well however have a case to answer as to why he did not expedite the repatriation of the abducted girl back to her parents within days since he was fully aware that she was abducted by one of his subjects.

In saner climes, the emir will be making his defence before a court instead using the media as an avenue to pass the blame onto security agencies for his glaring lapses.

The media succeeded where the emirate failed 

For now, the narrative by Ese’s mother that the abducted teenager was kept in the emir’s palace for over almost a year has placed a moral burden on the Kano emirate. It is important that Emir Sanusi clears the air and tell us precisely his role in this kidnap episode and why he failed to live up to the high standards expected of him.

Meanwhile, kudos must go to media organisations like, The Punch, the Nation, AIT, Channels, Tribune, the Sun, Vanguard, This Day among others, who succeeded where the Kano emirate failed by championing the release of Ese Oruru from her pedophile abductor, Yunusa, who has gotten her pregnant. May he be punished severely for his crimes against the Oruru family and his crimes against humanity.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the editorial policy of 


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