Keep Your Eyes on the Prize: #112ChibokGirls in Boko Haram Captivity for 1771 Days
We must keep our Eyes On The Prize until all Boko Haram captives are free. #112ChibokGirls have been in Boko Haram captivity For 1771 days #LeahSharibu for 364 days, #AliceNgaddah for 354 days. Thousands of other Nigerians are also held captive We must keep demanding their rescue and reunification with their families. 60 minutes did a focus on our #ChibokGirls on Sunday, February 17, 2019. Here’s a clip.
Many of the issues identified by 60 Minutes are important. Trauma continues. Healing is a long term process. There are tremendous educational challenges, some of the decisions made by those with oversight are questionable, one example being preventing babies born to our #ChibokGirls (as a result to the forced “marriage” to Boko Haram men), from being on campus with their mothers. There is also striking contrast with the situation in IDP camps where the conditions are harrowing and harsh, even while the IDPs, including young women peers of our #ChibokGirls are not given similar opportunities and privileges. This is patently inequitable. The siblings and communities of our #ChibokGirls are in similar situations.
This humanitarian crisis has been unfolding in the Northeast of Nigeria for more than 5 years, with Boko Haram having existed since at least 2002; and there is need for carefully designed, comprehensive, culturally appropriate responses.
Millions of people have been displaced (over 2 million). Boko Haram has killed more people than ISIS. It’s going to take more than what’s been done thus far to meaningfully address these problems. This is why good advocacy is important.
It is heartbreaking that 112 of our #ChibokGirls remain in Boko Haram captivity. So are #LeahSharibu (one of the #DapchiGirls) and #AliceNgaddah (the last of the humanitarian workers remaining in Boko Haram captivity after her two colleagues were brutally executed). Boko Haram widely disseminated videos of the two executions. Beyond these more clearly identifiable women, there are thousands of Nigerians also in Boko Haram captivity. It's troubling that in Nigeria, we don’t have a wellspring of agitation for their rescue. It is sad and tragic that so many lives have been disrupted and there seems to be no end in sight.
Once again, we can't afford to ignore our fellow-Nigerians' plight.
We must keep our Eyes On The Prize!