Nabila Sanda Galadima is daughter to Alhaji Umar Sanda Galadima, the Galadima of Biu. The 20-year-old Bingham University Mass Communication student got converted from Islam to Christianity in 2017 in Jos and has long been persecuted for it.
She made headlines early 2018 when her father used his influence to unlawfully arrest her through the Department of Secret Service (DSS), National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and the Nigerian Army.
She and her male friend, Mr. Simput Eagles Dafup II, an engineer based in Ghana, who took her to the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Plateau State, were unlawfully detained in DSS for weeks.
Nabila in April 2018 released some videos on Facebook (https://web.facebook.com/nabila.galadima) explaining her ordeal and how terrible she was treated for no crime committed except for converting to Christianity.
On 1st September 2018, she showed on her Facebook page evidence of DSS attempting to unlawfully arrest her – after many unsuccessful tracking of her location by hacking her Facebook account. She also shared some death threats issued on her. Her life and that of Simput has been in danger, and they for more than a year now have been running for their lives.
Nabila had escaped by going abroad for continuing her education. While in school, the institution requested for her WASSCE original certificate which made it imperative for her to come back to Nigeria for it. In the face of danger and fear she contacted a Reverend, John Ekunnusi to accompany her (for security reasons) to Jos for her WASSCE Certificate.
He couldn’t go but he asked his younger brother (Jamiu Ekunnusi) to help. Unfortunately, Jamiu had been seeking such a chance to whisk/snatch her away to her family for re-Islamisation. He was contracted by Nabila’s parents to get her. He cunningly used this opportunity to execute his heartless, brutal assignment.
He tried raping her, but he couldn’t succeed, he then hurriedly handed her to Police & the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) around Maza Maza Motor Park, Lagos.
Since March 2019 till date; it’s 90 days now, she’s unlawfully detained while her studies is forcefully on hold. No justice for her… She’s a prisoner of her faith in a democratic country like Nigeria where freedom of religion is constitutional.
Religion has brought a great divide directly affecting Nigeria politically, economically, and even socially. In the days of old, conversion from one religion to another was no news; it had no extra attention, mellow drama or community tension.
Religious inter-marriage was overlooked and well attended to by family and friends from mainly the two pronounced religions in the country (Christianity and Islam). But now, the story is way different as such decisions always come with death threats. However, a few people still dare the path.
In Nigeria, the constitution is very clear about taking such decisions into action. In the 1999 Constitution as amended, Section 38 (1) of the constitution and Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Right, provides: “Every person shall be entitled to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, including freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom (either alone or in community with others, and in public or in private) to manifest and propagate his religion or belief in worship, teaching, practice and observance.”
Section 35 (1) Every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure permitted by law.
Section 39 (1) Every person shall be entitled to freedom of expression, including the freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference.
Section 41 (1) of Constitution provides that: “Every Citizen of Nigeria is entitled to move freely throughout Nigeria and to reside in any part thereof.
However, these laws have been abused, violated and relegated in Nigeria. There are many cases that prove my assertion true; when one goes into Google for some information, they’re just at fingertips! Notwithstanding, the concentration here is on Nabila Sanda Galadima. She has been through a lot for the sake of her religious decision.
I wish Nigeria would learn to tolerate each other, and live in peace as our forefathers did.