The Man With 107 Wives

And you thought your college boyfriend was a player…Bello Maasaba, a Nigerian Islamic faith healer, has married 107 women. He now has 86 wives, ranging in age from 19 to 64. Nine have died, and he’s divorced twelve wives for disobedience. <!–more–>

The entire family, along with some of Maasaba’s followers and aides, lives in a house with 89 rooms, where a microphone and speaker system let the patriarch speak to his entire brood at once.

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Photo of Bello Masaaba by Robyn Dixon, via the LA Times

Masaaba lived the first part of his life as a normal guy with a clothing business and just two wives. Then, while in the throes of a religious vision in the 1970s, an angel instructed him to take many wives. The same vision led him to become a traditional faith healer who does not believe in medicine. Even if his children are ill, Masaaba refuses to seek medical care. He says that when his children have died, “I didn’t feel annoyed or upset. I didn’t feel anything because it’s God who gave them to me and it’s God who takes them away.”

Maasaba has fathered 185 children in total, and 133 are still living.

Three years ago, Islamic authorities in Niger ordered Maasaba to divorce 82 of his wives, keeping four, because the Koran only allows up to four wives. He refused, and was subsequently arrested and put in jail. His wives demonstrated for his release — 11 were pregnant at the time — and testified on his behalf in a court trial. The judge asked to hear testimony from all his wives, but never made it through all of them, deciding to free Masaaba after hearing from wives #1 through #57.

When asked how he…ahem…satisfies so many wives, Masaaba says, “In his wisdom, God has given me the power and strength to give them the sexual portion they need. If I didn’t satisfy them, they would leave.”

Read the entire fascinating story, as reported by Robyn Dixon in the LA Times >>

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One Comment

  1. On a separate note, a study just found that wedding linens can be recycled 107 times. The 108th wedding is a whole other story.

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