The Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) Advocacy Group (Lagos Family) in a statement on Wednesday released details of activities to mark the 3 year of the heartbreaking abduction of 276 girls from Chibok Secondary School, Borno state.
81 of them have escaped, were rescued or have been released, but the remaining 195 still remain in captivity.
Read the statement from the group below:
On April 14, 2014, 276 female students of Government Secondary School, Chibok in Borno State were abducted by Boko Haram. 57 of them managed to escape on their own, 21 rescued, 1 found while 195 remain in captivity with Boko Haram close to 3 years later. Outraged about the lack of government response, Nigerian citizens mobilized and took to the streets to demand the immediate rescue of the girls.
In the initial weeks following the abductions, there were protests in Lagos, Ibadan, Kano, Abuja, Enugu, Ekiti supported by friends and supporters around the world – London, Washington, DC, Atlanta, Paris, Germany and Nairobi to name a few.
This Thursday, April 14, 2017, will mark exactly 3 years of their unfortunate sojourn in captivity! How much longer must we wait before they are all rescued?
As concerned stakeholders and citizens of this country, the Bring-Back-Our-Girls (BBOG) advocacy group has highlighted the plight of these innocent girls even at a global level and engaged the government and other agencies in a constructive manner to secure the rescue of the girls.
Our advocacy methodology include a daily sit-out in Abuja, weekly sit-outs in Lagos, Oshogbo, and Ibadan; visits to relevant stakeholders and development of tools like the Citizens’ Solutions to End Terrorism and the Verification, Authentication and Reunification System (VARS). The BBOG family in Nigeria has engaged on a continuous basis various stakeholders including State Governors; the previous Chief of Defense Staff & National Security Adviser; various UN agencies; Ambassadors of our neighbouring countries and met twice with President Muhammadu Buhari on this matter.
We are aware that the Chibok girls are not the only victims of the insurgency in the north- east. Nigerians were kidnapped before them and more have been kidnapped after them.
However, for the Chibok girls, we know their names, we have their pictures and we have met their parents. We will continue to use them as symbol for the ongoing crisis because we believe that whatever machinery is deployed to rescue them will help other Nigerians. As President Buhari noted in his inaugural address to the Nigerian people, “we cannot claim to have defeated Boko Haram without rescuing the Chibok girls and all other innocent persons held hostage by insurgents”.
It is for this reason, that the BBOG Group in Lagos, in consonance with the Global week of action, has planned two major activities for this period.
First is a state-wide PEACEFUL RALLY TO GOVERNOR AKINWUNMI AMBODE on Thursday April 13, 2017 members will converge at Shoprite, Alausa by 9. 00am to march to Alausa and SPECIAL PRAYER SESSION AND INTERFAITH VIGIL on Friday, April 14, 2017 at Falomo Roundabout, Ikoyi by 4.30pm.
Organizing the vigil and special prayer sessions is our own way of showing the affected families that they are not alone, that we share their pain, and that we will continue to stand by them until our girls return.
We are also using this opportunity to cry out once again to our authorities: “Nigerian leaders, BringBackOurGirls Now and Alive!” “Fighting for the Chibok girls is fighting for the soul of Nigeria”.
What are we demanding? Bring Back Our Girls Now and Alive!
What do we want? Results from the Rescue Operation
When will we stop? Not until our girls are back and alive!
When will we stop? Not without our daughters!
Signed: Yemisi Ransome-Kuti, Aisha Oyebode, Ayo Obe, Habiba Balogun, Yemi Adamolekun, Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, Ngozi Iwere, Olalere Babasola, Adwoa Edun.