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How Christian Aid Workers Survive Their Ordeal : The Extraordinary Story Of Marvelous In Boko Haram Captivity

The Oasis Reporters

April 13, 2020

Exclusively released journal reveals more of how humanitarian hostages survived terrorist indoctrination.

Emmanuel Ogebe, middle. With Marvellous and a sister, both backing the camera as a deliberate gesture for obvious reasons.
part of the journal kept by Marvellous.
Another page of the journal by Marvellous kept in secrecy.

Human Rights Lawyer gives additional details of investigation into abduction

In a journal exclusively released to the world for the first time, international human rights lawyer Emmanuel Ogebe reveals more of how hostage Marvelous kept the faith in the evil den of deadly lions.


How A Hostage survived Christmas in an islamist terror camp

Marvelous and her aid-worker colleague had just been separated from their cotravelers on the basis of their gender and religion. The Christian men were executed on the side of the road and the Christian women were declared slaves by the terrorists. You would expect that they would be cowed from the traumatic ambush. No, Marvelous’ defiance began from the word go.

At their first test point after the move from the ambush point, the terrorists offered them soft drinks and then asked, “tell us what you’d like to eat. We’ll get you whatever you want?”

“Really? Whatever we want?”, Marvelous inquired.

“Yes,” the gun-clutching Terrorist replied unaware he was walking into a semantic ambush.

“Well, I want Pizza and Sharwama,” Marvelous said matter-of-factly.

“What is that?”, responded the flummoxed Terrorist.

“Next time, do not say we should ask for anything if you know you do not really have everything,” she remonstrated.

Maybe it was her uncommon courage in speaking to them like no one else had or maybe it was the simple correction to be truthful in their communication that struck a chord with them but there was to be some chit chat between the hostages and captors from then on.

The very next day, Marvelous was selected out of half a dozen captives to be their spokesperson in a proof of life video shoot – the outcome of her unwitting audition for an unwanted starring role.

The sole Muslim captive was kept out of the video while the remaining Christian hostages were lined up behind her for the recording. It had to be only Christians, the terror producers insisted.

Thereafter the first of successive indoctrination classes would hold. A Quaranic instructor named Sa’ad would specially come to their prison hideaway to teach them Islam every other day.

So committed was he to the cause that one one occasion when he couldn’t come, he sent them a phone with an app that recited Quaranic surahs to them. It was the first time they had seen a phone since they were dispossessed of theirs…

Marvelous would interact in the Islamic classes. When a story was told of biblical figures she recognized like Abraham, she would recount what she new of him. Sa’ad would then say what she had narrated was the movie version of the story created by westerners.
So to avoid a heated theological conflict, she would wait till after the Islamic class and write in her journal a reaffirmation of her beliefs.

Marvelous went even further. Her co-hostage was Catholic. Marvelous got her to teach her the Holy Rosary and various catholic doctrines.

In return, Marvelous would regale her with tales of Marvel Superheroes like Black Panther from Wakanda, Ironman and others coming to rescue them from captivity.

Her colleague had never heard of Marvel comics or the movies although ironically in the Black Panther, there was a scene in which superheroes played by actresses Lupita Yongo and Danai Gurira rescued abducted girls from terrorists in Sambisa forest…

This Easter, Marvelous is spending as a free person. She was released just before her birthday.

As she hears of the Chadian onslaught in the Lake Chad region, she’s concerned about the safety of those she left behind in captivity. Some would rather be killed in the offensive than continue their miserable captivity but Marvelous continues to pray for them as they spend another Easter in the den of terror.

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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