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Tuesday, 25 March 2014

'They Slept with Me, I Saw them Slaughter about 50 People' - Female Boko Haram Survivors Tell their Story

Two ladies residing in the North-Eastern part of Nigeria have given a moving account of their ordeal in the hands of suspected members of the Boko Haram sect and how they managed to escape.

Speaking in an interview with the BBC Hausa service monitored in Kaduna on Monday, Liatu, aged 23, said she spent 12 days in the hands of her abductors inside the Sambisa forest before she escaped. According to her, she had left Maiduguri on her way to the village when she was abducted, adding that the Boko Haram
members had barricaded the road just near the Bama bridge, killed some people and went away with others into the bushes.

She said after staying with them for that period:

“one man suggested that we run away because one can only die once.” And we took a Golf car and ran away. The Boko Haram people chased us on motorbike, shooting us, they killed those who sat at the back, when we were approaching Bama, they retreated and went back.Liatu, who said she was a Christian, explained further that the Boko Haram members had earlier asked her to accept Islam as a religion, even as she watched while they slaughtered about 50 people.

Similarly, Janet, who was 19 years old, told the BBC that she was in Boko Haram captivity for three months where they had tried to conscript her into their fold after sleeping with her.

She narrated that they went along with her to Gwoza town in Borno State where they brought out five people and slaughtered them. According to the lady, they gave her a knife to slaughter one but she could not do it, but the wife of the Boko Haram leader was given the knife which she used to slaughter a man.

Till date, she explained, she had continued to be frightened by the nightmare and the gory details of what transpired when the victims were killed. She claimed that most of the Boko Haram members were known faces to her because they were neighbours, but she was able to escape after feigning illness and was allowed to seek for medical attention.

“I feigned illness for two weeks, they said I had AIDS and should be taken to their hospital for test, I told them it was stomach pain, that was how I escaped. The Boko Haram hide in caves and mountains, they sight jets and other aircrafts, I felt happy whenever I see soldiers, but they could not locate the Boko Haram who are mostly along the Liman Kara and Gwoza axis.
They took many of us into the bush, if they search and found ID cards, they will say they had warned that people should not work for the government, and they will kill the person. For those Konduga girls, they will select those who perm their hair and kill them.”Meanwhile, the BBC Hausa service reported that a video that was released on Monday, had Boko Haram leader, Shekau, claiming responsibility of the attack on Giwa, a Barracks in Maiduguri where they released some of their members.

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