“Despite the dawning of a new day, I continued to lie facedown but remained fully aware of the goings-on in the environment, waiting to dance to whatever music the kidnappers would play for us next.”
“It’s time to call your wife”
That early morning, the kidnappers made all hostages call their families and friends in respect of the ransom amount they demanded on each of us. The other hostages were first attended to before it came to my turn.
I would later realise that the kidnappers didn’t use their own phone lines to contact the families of their hostages; they made use of the phones of their victims.
My phone had been taken from me since the previous day, so I had lost any hope of ever having it back with me again. Other hostages were also dispossessed of their phones.
The kidnappers didn’t want us to talk to one another. So we too kept our cool and calm. But our peace would soon be disrupted as they began inviting each of us in turns to a corner for profiling with a view to extracting additional vital information from us. What followed next would turn out to be a gruesome experience.
The gruelling profiling
I knew it would be a matter of only a few minutes before it got to my turn to be profiled through a series of questions intentionally constructed to elicit the answers that would help their criminal cause.
“Hey, oya, you from the ash colour Toyota car,” their leader shouted, as he pin-pointed me by stamping his feet on my back while I lay on the forest ground, “Come here.”
Interestingly, he didn’t forget the colours of the two cars they ambushed on the highway. Both were Toyotas but he was able to differentiate them by their colours and model.
He didn’t know my name by then but he made sure he didn’t confuse me with the hostage taken from the other Toyota car. I would later realise that the kind of car one drove was part of the initial visible external means of profiling a target.
I made effort to stand up to face him. But before getting up on my feet, one of the other gunmen dashed to where I was and dragged me aside into a small human circular triangle formed by three of the other gunmen.
“Kneel down and face here,” their main guy commanded me, with two other men pointing their long guns at me – each at my left and right, towards my back.
The gunmen continued shooting sporadically into the air as they led us into the bush from the road. Either they were trying to ward-off any attempt by anybody to come rescue us or they were warning us not to try anything funny.
I live in Nigeria, a country richly blessed by God but filled with many problems. Most of the problems are caused by all of us humans – leaders and the citizenry alike. This is a piece of common knowledge but some people will still choose to deny it.
We are all part of the problems and the problems are part of us. But for how long will we continue to live with all the preventable problems that plague us?
Except you are from outer space, you must be well aware of some of the not-so-good stories of things that befall us as a people and as the nation with the highest population of blacks in the world. Because of that, I would totally understand if you are fed up with hearing ugly tales about Nigeria and Nigerians.
And to be honest with you, most of us are tired too, but what can we say? It’s our country after all – for better or worse.
Just read my story highlighting another worrisome problem we face. It may sound familiar but it doesn’t mean that what happened is acceptable.
How close are you to your spouse? Do you wish you were closer to each other than you are presently?
Are there ways you and your spouse can feel more intimate? Do you want to learn how you can be closer to your spouse? If your answer to the last question is ‘yes,’ then let me say congratulations to you because you are in the right place. In this post, you will see five things you should do to be closer to your spouse than you are presently.
In a Nigerian online forum, I joined in an interesting conversation initiated by a young man who got a lady pregnant out of wedlock. He and his partner were contemplating having an abortion but had not made up their minds about it. The man decided to seek useful advice from members of the forum.
“I have an issue bugging me and I need some serious advice because I have been very indecisive so far.
There is a lady I’m seeing. She came to my place a few weeks ago and we had sex, first with condoms and later without condoms…A few weeks later, she called to say she is pregnant [although I gave her money to buy a popular contraceptive drug]…
At this moment, we are considering removing the baby. While I have been very indecisive, she has agreed to go with whatever decision I take and has spoken to a doctor who will do [the abortion].
However, I am unsure as of this moment if I want to go on with this because even though I am done with [schooling], I do not think I have gotten to that point where I can shoulder more responsibilities…And I really do not know who to turn to when I am unable to provide for the both of them.
What do you guys think? Do I go on with this or just let the baby be?”
There goes the big question! Now lets talk about the answers.
As expected, a number of people commented to advise the young man. The pieces of advice came in different shades and colours. But they can be distilled into two:
Those who said the guy should carry on with the abortion plan; and
Those who advised against having an abortion.
In this post, I’m interested in the latter group. The reason is simple: Long time readers of this blog will have noticed that I’m pro-life.
It is no longer news that Microsoft founder Bill Gates is divorcing Melinda Gates, his wife of 27 years. Perhaps what is news is the unfolding reason for their divorce and the lessons we can learn from it.
Although we don’t have all the intricate details, various media sources have made sure we are not left in limbo with respect to the possible reasons the Gates gave for their divorce announcement.
While publicly announcing that they would be getting divorced, the Gates stated that, “We no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives.”