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Modern Day Forced Marriages

“Arrangee Marriage” the practice of arranged marriages is a serious problem in our society today. The tradition of forced marriages is widespread in Nigeria, usually parents selling their children into wedlock.

Children especially girls are forced into these marriages. If the girl is against the union, she could be kidnapped while out running errands, usually with her parents consent. Once the man (usually older) forcibly rapes the girl, she is left with few choices but to accept her fate and remain with him.

The new face of forced arranged marriages is the new wave of churches popping up in Nigeria today including the Christian Pentecostal Church. They marry based on the arrangement set for them by their religious leaders. The church tests for virginity, pregnancy, sickle cell traits and AIDS/HIV. The virginity and pregnancy tests are conducted on the bride for reasons best known to the church, a double standard and abuse of the women.

There is nothing wrong in principle with testing for sickle cell and AIDS/HIV as a way of promoting family health, but virginity and pregnancy tests in the church? These brides are brainwashed by a bunch of self-righteous so-called “men of god” who abuse them in the name of Christianity. And then you have the grooms who are delusional about their faith.

There was a case at a Redeemed Church (RCCG) in Lagos a few months back where a thirty year old woman was tested, not only was she not a virgin she was also pregnant. Her fiancé worked at the church and knew the church is strongly against premarital sex. Unfortunately the congregations follow the ideals of these lustful men in search of salvation from God.

There was this couple (Janet & Yinka) in their early twenties who were members of my old church. They had known each other since their teens everyone in the church knew them as a couple. One day my adopted brother told me what he was working on, a scheme to convince Janet that Yinka is not the best person to marry because marrying in ones age group especially for women is not in their best interest.

Cooking For Wedding Party
Cooking For Wedding Party

I knew Pastor Ade’s area of expertise was in match making but that was a step too far. I don’t know how he did it but he succeeded in convincing Janet that college was a waste of time and that marrying a man that was 40 years older was the best option for her life.

The groom is a twice-married widower senior pastor who lost both wives to illnesses. He has four grown children, one of them older than Janet

How is Janet doing after over a decade of “Arrangee Marriage”, now in her mid thirties with five children, and a husband who is older than her father? She did not come home for several years after the marriage to avoid awkward conversations.

We have moved on as a country from many traditional practices that we see as imposing or outdated for modern times however, many of the practices in the Pentecostal churches today is far worse than what we moved away from.

Folakemi Odoaje for #JujuFilms 

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Nigerian Citizens | Pawns of Corruption & Religious Dogma

Before the kidnapping of 230 young girls in Nigeria hit the sensibilities of social media and the world, hundreds of girls in Nigeria some as young as 9 years old were brutalized, forcibly raped, killed, burnt to death as they slept in their school dormitories, sold into slavery, forced into marriage, and forcibly converted to Islam. These are just some of the crimes against humanity committed in the name of Islam in Nigeria by Boko Haram.

Nigeria is no different from the rest of the world drawn on very visible religious lines. It is easy to file these crimes under religious extremism without addressing the true core of the problem as Nigeria’s political system is also drawn on very visible religious lines, a byproduct of colonialism.

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The poor miss-educated population who are the victims cannot question these crimes committed in the ‘name of God” for fear for their lives and family’s, you see they have no protection from either side. Be aware that a government is a mirrored reflection of the country it represents. In Nigeria we have an extremely corrupt political system that produced a mass population living in extreme poverty that breed groups like Boko Haram who are also vowing to keep the population they claim to be fighting for uneducated, miss-educated, radicalized and enslaved.

You see the Nigerian government is guilty of the same crimes we are now accusing Boko Haram of perpetrating in keeping the population they swore to represent uneducated, miss-educated and living in extreme poverty. The rest of the Nigerian population stood by and watched quietly while this manifested.

Fela Anikulapo Kuti was brutalized, imprisoned and his 78year old mother Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, a Women’s Rights activist was tossed out of a second floor window of Fela’s Kalakuta Republic premises by the Nigeria government for their activism. This while the Nigerian population also stood by and watched quietly.

What we have in Nigeria is a weak population without the power to fire the greedy oppressive government that claims to be representing them. Ms. Ebony living in Cleveland Ohio USA could never fully understand the pains of the mothers of victims of Boko Haram’s extremist dogma.

Boko Haram is a creation of the Nigerian government’s corrupt culture and any campaign for the rescue of these young girls should be directed at President Goodluck Jonathan and Nigerian lawmakers. I wonder how much more of this blood fest they can stomach. You see they pawned their souls to their gods.

Open Letter To The People of Nigeria

Through the many decades of corruption in the Nigerian government establishment there is one name that stands out in the fight against corruption. At the risk to his life he made legitimate strides against corruption in Nigeria as the chairman of the Economic & Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

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His career as a police officer in the Nigerian Police Force, an activist lawyer, or as Chairman of the EFCC and currently as a consultant for several NGOs is always in the service for the people.

Nuhu was part of an advisory committee to establish a corruption free Afghanistan Police Department. He has received worldwide awards and acclaim for his courage and dedication in the fight against corruption in Nigeria. I propose the Nigerian people nominate Nuhu Ribadu the National Security Chairman of Nigeria. The average Nigerian will echo the usual sentiments that the powers that be will not grant Nuhu Ribadu such powers for fear of the many skeletons in their closets. Clearly this is now the people’s fight and I believe strongly that Nuhu Ribadu is the right candidate with the right experience to fight for the people.

Let your voice be heard by making a statement.

#JujuFilms