Why We Halted Our Protest to Chibok, Sambisa By Joe Okei-Odumakin
I must say this sincerely, but for the warnings that it may cost us OUR GIRLS for which we would do it, coupled with promises that the military would soon rescue them, we were prepared to take our protest to Chibok, and then to Sambisa.
Many would recall that I announced during our protest in Lagos while calling for rescue of the abducted school girls in Chibok, that “apart from women threatening to go naked, Chibok is not far from us”. What I meant was that we were actually prepared to head for Chibok, and then, Sambisa with our protests.
After that protest in Lagos, we were planning to stage next protest in Chibok and Sambisa. But we got warnings that it may provoke incidents that could result in undesirable loss of the captives. Whereas, military sources also assured the girls would be rescued soon. So, we decided to allow them free space to work. Our interest to have the girls return to their parents, not to be blamed for their loss. So, we took it calmly.
However, it is taking too long now! The captives have not been set free and terror acts have not ended. It’s more than 120 days and that is too much!
After their own abduction, wife of Cameroonian Vice Prime Minister had been “reportedly abducted” and “reportedly rescued”; politicians’ relatives that have also been taken by various kidnappers had since returned to their families. So, we wondered aloud that if rescue is possible, why are OUR GIRLS still in captivity more than 120 Days?
If their non-relatedness to powerful politicians is reason they are still in dark forest, what about the international concern; should that not be enough to put Government on its toes to get OUR GIRLS back?
We are resolved to renew our clamor for the rescue of OUR GIRLS. We shall begin adopting different methods to make our single demand; Rescue Our Girls!
If it requires bringing every Nigerian together regardless of ethnic, religious or political affiliations to achieve this, we can’t wait any further. We shall re-ignite the fire and bring on the pressure more.
For the sake of OUR CHIBOK GIRLS, we say #NigeriansUniteAgainstTerror
Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin,
President of Women Arise
President of Campaign for Democracy (CD).