Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 7th 2014 Contents over 12 months. At one point, Wasila dumped another
man she d been seeing in favour of Sani, Mohammad
The marriage happened after a year, under a shade
tree outside of the family house in Kaura. Their wed-
ding was like any other in rural Kano state.
According to local custom, the groom gives the
bride a dowry; in this case, Sani gave Tasiu about
$60. Her father said Tasiu didn t know what she
wanted to do with the money, a princely sum in a
poor village. He never found out: She was off to her
new life with Sani in Yansoro the following day.
Tasiu moved into a room furnished with wooden
cabinets and strips of cheap plastic flooring in a
compound Sani shared with his first wife, Ramatu
Alhaji-Murtala. He d married her several years earlier,
according to a village elder, Musa Amadu.
As is typical when new wives are brought into a
village, Tasiu stayed for the next few weeks in Sani s
compound, said Amadu. The elder never met her.
Tasiu s father also didn t hear from his daughter over
those weeks. A picture found in Tasiu s old room
shows her posed in front of the cabinets, her eyes
gazing out from the pur-
ple khimar covering her
head and body.
According to Sani s
father and older brother
Musa Sani, what they
refer to as the "incident"
happened 17 days after
the wedding. It started
with a plate of danwake,
a dish of dumplings made
with bean flour and
ground baobab leaves.
Co-wives in northern
Nigeria take turns cooking for their husband.
On the day of the incident, Sani s father and brother
said, Alhaji-Murtala cooked the food, while Tasiu
served it to their husband. Sani headed outside of
the compound to share his meal with Hasan Yushau,
a servant who worked in his shop. That was when
Tasiu stepped in, Amadu said.
"When he was going out with the food, she said,
This is for you only, " Amadu said.
"Wasila even dragged him [back into the house]
and he refused."
Sani s meal with one turned into a meal with three.
He sat down to eat with Yushau and was soon joined
by a beggar Amadu knew only as Nasiru. Sani shared
some of the dumplings with the beggar, who in turn
shared with his friend Aisha Ibrahim.
Shortly after they ate, they all began to die.
Few people in Kaura and Yansoro can explain how
Tasiu went from bride to alleged killer in 17 days.
Mohammad Tasiu insisted that his daughter was
happily married. The Sani family saw no warning
signs that something like this was brewing in Umaru s
They asked the same of Tasiu. She, too, said she
didn t know. And then in the next breath, Alhaji-
Murtala said, Tasiu bowed her head and spoke.
"She said the father gave her up to the man, and
she doesn t love the man," Alhaji-Murtala recalled.
Tasiu said her father beat her when she protested
her imminent marriage to Sani.
"Her father forced her into marrying the man she
doesn t love," Alhaji-Murtala recalled her saying.
"That s why she had to use the poison in his food
---to kill him."
A combination of tradition, poverty and religion
perpetuates child marriage in northern Nigeria, said
Amina Hanga, executive secretary at the Isa Wali
Empowerment Initiative, a Kano-based organisation
that focuses on women s rights and is monitoring
Tasiu s case.
Unicef data shows that child brides are becoming
less prevalent overall. But that same data predicts
that Nigeria s swelling population will mean that the
number of child spouses will actually increase in the
coming decades. (Al Jazeera)
December 7, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
From Page A40
the man quickly fell for her.
Sani s father, Sani Garba, remembers
Wasila Tasiu coming to meet his son at the
store where he sold farming goods in the
nearby village of Yansoro.
Sometimes, she d come bearing small
gifts. Sani already had a wife, but Garba
remembers his son confiding in him that
he d found a new love. "Umaru ... told me
he loved Wasila," Garba said.
Tasiu and Sani s courtship progressed
Child brides on the rise---Unicef
forced her into
marrying the man
she doesn't love.
"That's why she
had to use the
poison in his food
---to kill him."
The father of the
Sani Garba, and
the groom's older
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