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#BringBackOurGirls: To Say or Do Nothing Is Insensitive & Inhumane



About a week ago, I was having a conversation with my mum, I asked her “mum, where do we start from? Where do we start from in solving the numerous unending problems of this nation? The answer is I really do not know. I have tried to be positive (I still am) and patriotic, but sometimes we have to draw the line when the state fails.

Over 1,500 Nigerians have been killed in the first 3 months of this year in over 42 attacks a source reveals, as a result of insurgency and counter-insurgency measures by the military,  numerous accounts of cattle theft, the bloody May 10th Nyanya bombing that claimed over 70 lives in the nation’s capital, ten months polytechnic teacher’s strike and presently, the abduction of these school girls. Statements like “the Federal Government has condemned the abduction of the girls and vows that the culprits will pay” were repeatedly reported by the press.  After condemning their deeds, what valid actions were taken against it? There was a time I was literally scared to read the news to avoid starting my day with another “bloody news headline” in my head.

Sources confirm that the Boko Haram sect is not faceless as they make us believe. These girls were actually seen by protesting women, who were brave enough to go in search of the girls with some military troops, but were persuaded to return back to their homes for their safety with the faith that the soldiers will invade the camps and rescue the girls, but nothing was done after that. Questions on the mind of many is what is the brain plan behind the actions of the Boko Haram sect?

A report revealed that the Boko Haram found it strategic to keep the girls to save their camps from bombardment by the Nigerian military troops, using the presence of the innocent girls in their camp as defense . Imagine the trauma the parents and guardians of those school girls experienced on the 14thof April after they heard the news that over 200 students were abducted from the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok area of the north-eastern state of Borno, Nigeria. Two weeks later and these women are yet to get concrete information on the whereabouts of their daughters.  Just when we were making some progress with girl-child education and recorded increments in school enrollment rates in the Northern part of Nigeria, this happens.

On the 30th of April, hundreds of women marched the streets of Abuja, Nigeria protesting for the rescue of the missing girls. A mother of one of the victims in a tearful mood said

“where are the human right groups in this country? Is there no government in the country? Are there no fathers and mothers in the government again to deem it fit to tell us what is happening…… if our children are dead, where are the bodies? Let us see the bodies.”

These girls are currently rumored to be sold to the fighters for early marriage for a token of 2000 Naira ($12) or smuggled out of the country, their fate, totally unknown. Ironically, at the same time, political parties are holding ‘peaceful’ congresses nationwide in preparation for next year’s election amidst the trauma going on. What happened to basic social responsibility and being your brother’s keeper? How can a human being with a functioning heart not be concerned about the fate of these missing girls and the trauma and uncertainty the mothers are facing?

It is such a shame that we have not only aired our dirty laundry for the whole word to see, but we actually have more faith in international organizations and other nations of the world to help us than the government that was put in place for us. Please sign this petition here to take action against this.

To say or do nothing about this is to be insensitive and inhumane. This is our collective responsibility.

Photo Credit: ToluOgunlesi


  1. charles

    May 2, 2014 at 11:36 am

    To whom exactly is this piece written to? Hapless & helpless Nigerians or the clueless drunkard(s) in power?

  2. Funmi

    May 2, 2014 at 11:46 am

    These girls were kidnapped on the 15th April and i wonder why it took so long for Nigerians to raise these alarm . Now i wonder is it that they are really concerned or just because this topic was trending on social media ?!!!!!!?
    These awareness should have been raised the first night these innocent girls went missing. Every hour spent in the den of these kidnappers is highly traumatic to these girls, am not talking about the countless episodes of constant sexual abuse , the starvation, the poor condition in which they are imprisoned. it has been over two weeks and now everyone is screaming for the Federal government to help rescue the girls, Like the federal Government are not aware of the situation and chose to turn a blind eye. They sit in the Ac’d conference rooms and eat heavy lunch buffets and talk about stupid things and still get paid for it while these girls are in constant terror day and night.
    Two weeks now and even if those girls are found and rescused, many of them wont come back the same Psychologically, emotionally, physically and mentally. Many if not all of them have been defiled over and over again, the unprotected sex, no immediate treatment, std’s , pregnancies etc are just things that are inevitable.
    In the midst of protesting for the release of these innocent ones, another bomb blast took place last night…….this is just to show that the Boko Haram sect members are deaf to our pleas and to show the whole country that the Government of this nation is INCAPABLE of protecting its own citizens in their own country.
    This is a civil war, the only difference is that one party is fighting hard and the other party is busy sleeping!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • niki

      May 2, 2014 at 1:04 pm

      Maybe like play, like play people thought they would find the girls. Some people didnt even know about it but social media reached out to people that might not be reached to put pressure on the govt.

  3. Funmi

    May 2, 2014 at 11:52 am

    na wa o

  4. I care

    May 2, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    It is written to everybody, even if you call we the citizens helpless, we’ve got mouths and hearts(i suppose), we can pray and raise awareness. @funmi, two weeks gone that’s true but it only took this long because of the ‘I don’t care as long as I’m not directly affected’ mentality of a Nigerian, two weeks gone but better late than never.join the world to raise awareness about this and never never stop praying because God listens.

  5. slice

    May 2, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    we need to protect our borders

  6. Unapologetic

    May 2, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    I think why most nigerian didn’t scream or come to lend their voices at first is because of how numb they have become when it comes to situations like these and how ineffective the government has been in anything and I believe that most Nigerians saw the kidnap of 234+ girls as a fluke.. Abi no be that be naija area code? anyways I don’t believe it really happened. Maybe a few girls or even one was taken, but to say 234 or more…I beg stop the misleading info. I believe that even if it’s one girl that nigerian government should do something, but because we know how unproductive and full of deceit and corruption they are when it comes to anything, I say that they should ask for outside help. I don’t follow crowds, I walk my own path and I say if I am wrong and it ends up 234 plus girls were kidnapped, then oh well, but I am very sure it’s a big misinformation and another #kony2012 like situation where people followed blindly. One thing this has shown us is that Nigerians can be tenacious about something and get the world involved in hearing their voices. As a skeptic I want at least one parent of this supposed kidnapped girls to come forth and the school admins to come and tell us how this supposed kidnapping happened and names of the girls gone. Infact I don’t even think that school has that many teenage girls. Have you all asked yourselves why have the missing girls not been identified by teachers and parents? Anyways like I said even if it is one child, the nigerian government should do everything they can. I believe this is political ploy, or rather one big scam.

    • fixnigeriaseries

      May 4, 2014 at 8:50 pm

      I’m not getting why you’d think this was all a scam. Or could you be thinking that it was APC that rented all the wailing mothers and sorrowful fathers whose faces have been splashed all over the Nigerian media since the incident? And concerning the lack of release of list, this is a country that still places heavy stigma on victims of sexual abuse and the authorities may be trying to shield these girls from that. There’s no smoke without fire.

  7. Zoe

    May 2, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    At first glance @unapologetic’s comment, it did sound ridiculous that someone would think this a scam but at the end, I see a little sense in what he or she is saying. Although I don’t see it as a scam, I still think it is a little bit suspicious that the Federal Government doesn’t have a list of the missing girls or the accurate number at that. In fact, apart from the nonchalance of the govt, in particular the police which allowed for those girls to be taken from a school successfully, loaded into trucks and transported to their destination without interception by them, I also think the school played a significant role in the kidnap of the girls. Maybe not the principal but some staff must have voluntarily aided the kidnap of those girls.

    • Ada Nnewi

      May 2, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      From your comment, it becomes clear that history should be made a compulsory subject at all secondary school levels and the biafran war (pre/during and post) should be discussed. My dad was a boarding school student in mission school in kano when the war broke out. The northerners killed all security at the school around 2am and preceded into the hostels to slaughter innocent school boys who sounded eastern. Only a eastern boys managed to escape and they were smuggled out by the white principal.

      Anyways back to your comment, I have found it to be the norm for history to continually repeat itself in Nigeria cause we are a people that like to forget and leave it to God, without taking lessons from our past in order to secure our future. How many times have you had police or emergency services in Nigeria arrive when they are needed?! Do you think members of the Nigerian Police will endanger their lives to rescue over 200 children being kidnapped if they are not the children of rich and influential men or wealthy politicians.

      Why should the army feel the need to interfere when over 200 young girls are being kidnapped when till now the federal government is yet to give orders for them to invade the sambisa forest inn search of the young girls. why should the army interfere when the federal government has made it clear through it’s actions that it is unconcerned with the almost daily shedding of Nigerian blood.

      Every bomb attack renders some children orphans, some fatherless, some motherless and some parents, childless. Every bomb attack has somehow terribly screwed up someone’s future… It is not okay for any Nigerian to be silent! It is not okay for things to be business as usual. I am an Igbo girl but first of all I am Nigerian. If young Northern girls are taken then my sisters have been taken…

      It is just not okay to be silent…

    • ada nnewi

      May 2, 2014 at 6:59 pm

      Bella I corrected all my grammatical errors on dis comment in another comment and you didn’t post that one :(.. I was very emotional when I wrote the first 1

  8. zoe

    May 3, 2014 at 12:50 am

    Incase you selectively ignored the part of my comment that deals with the police nonchalance towards the abduction of the girls, I am writing again to remind you of that. It will be unwise to disregard other areas of the nation that need development in order to prevent history from repeating itself. My focus is not just on the police but also on the school system. Do you think it is coincidental that the school was selected for the abduction? The answer is no. It must have been after careful deliberation and information from an insider. Therefore, after the safe rescue of the girls (I hope), those who might have provided assistance to Boko Haram in one way or the other should be brought to justice and schools should be more alert so that this nation will not be thrown into another disgraceful era.

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