Professor #BringBackOurGirlsNYC on Day 41 of the Chibok abductions

On this 41st day since the Chibok abduction that violently tore over 200 young girls away from the bosom of their families, my heart goes out to the families of all the girls abducted from Chibok and other locations in Nigeria. The families of those who have been killed, maimed and mutilated as a result of Boko Haram inflicted terror also have my deepest sympathy and condolences. I pray that God comforts them and strengthens them. I pray that they are given the capacity to prevail.  I most of all pray that the damage inflicted on Nigeria and Nigerians will be I haven't been able to sleep well since the escalation of the Boko Haram insurgency.  I am with you in being heartbroken, saddened and incensed by the wanton disregard for the safety, well-being, welfare and security of its citizens by the FGN.  

What is a government without people? Who should count more, the majority or a callous, minute, insular and clueless minority?  Why did we fight for independence?  What does sovereignty, autonomy, self-determination mean?  What is the duty of a government in a democracy?  Are accountability, transparency, the rule of law and an open democratic arena where all voices are heard just words?  Nigeria deserves better. 

It is a huge disappointment that FGN has not demonstrated that it has any sense of purpose and consciousness about its duty to the Nigerian people.  
I decided to deal with the despair and disillusionment I was feeling by becoming what I jokingly call "Professor #BringBackOurGirlsNYC.  I've put a laundry list of some of my activities on my blog (  The last entry was on March 21.  

Please be encouraged.  What you and all the women who have stepped up to the plate to stand up and be counted in Nigeria are doing is much appreciated and admired all over the world.  People of all faiths are praying for our success in recovering and re-uniting the abducted girls with their families.  We should connect to those positive expressions of hope.  Standing in solidarity we will remain optimistic that our girls would be brought back to their families and we should all prepare to embrace and help them to ensure their post-trauma restoration.  Education for All has to be taken seriously in Nigeria. Just considering the UNESCO EFA goals below tells us that when the girls are rescued, we must make sure that Nigeria does right by all our children.  The Dakar Framework for Action also reiterates and extends the goals.  Plus it calls for country-level action.  There's also need for institutional reform but let me stop now.  I must grade more papers.

Education for All Goals

Six internationally agreed education goals aim to meet the learning needs of all children, youth and adults by 2015.
Goal 1
Expanding and improving comprehensive early childhood care and education, especially for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children.
Goal 2Ensuring that by 2015 all children, particularly girls, children in difficult circumstances and those belonging to ethnic minorities, have access to, and complete, free and compulsory primary education of good quality.
Goal 3
Ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met through equitable access to appropriate learning and life-skills programmes.
Goal 4
Achieving a 50 per cent improvement in levels of adult literacy by 2015, especially for women, and equitable access to basic and continuing education for all adults.
Goal 5
Eliminating gender disparities in primary and secondary education by 2005, and achieving gender equality in education by 2015, with a focus on ensuring girls’ full and equal access to and achievement in basic education of good quality.
Goal 6
Improving all aspects of the quality of education and ensuring excellence of all so that recognized and measurable learning outcomes are achieved by all, especially in literacy, numeracy and essential life skills.

All my sisters in the Women for Justice and Peace movement in Nigeria, and all members of #BringBackOurGirls groups worldwide, please take good care of yourself.  I started exercising because it helps to lift my spirit for a little while so I can keep going. But it's so, so difficult.

Keep up the good work one and all.  Everyone that hasn't yet joined us, stand with us to insist: #BringBackOurGirls!


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