The 112 girls kidnapped from a boarding school in Nigeria and still being held by Boko Haram will have spent five years in captivity if they are not released by next Sunday.
That was the sad message released by members of the Bring Back Our Girls movement who have been urging more action by the Nigerian government to locate and free the girls.
Over 200 students of the Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State were abducted by the terrorists on the night of April 14, 2014.
Over a hundred of them were released following pressure from the federal government, the intervention of activist Nigerians and the International Red Cross.
The girls have already spent 1,819 days in Boko Haram captivity. “This is not a date we ever imagined we would come to”, they wrote on a social media platform.
Four of the young women who managed to escape from the kidnappers now study at Dickenson College in Pennsylvania. The students are all on full scholarship funded by the Nigerian government’s Victim Support Fund and the Murtala Mohammed Foundation.
Meanwhile, in Washington, DC, a drama entitled “The Chibok Girls: Our Story” will be presented at the CrossCurrents festival on selected dates in April and May. Nigerian poet-dramatist Soyinka, now 84, will appear alongside Nigeria’s Renegade Theatre for the performance.
“Chibok Girls” was written and directed by Wole Oguntokun, Artistic Director of Renegade Theatre and Founder of Theatre Republic.
In a related development, the Nigeria Security Tracker, a project of the Council on Foreign Relations’ Africa program, documents and maps violence in Nigeria that is motivated by political, economic, or social grievances. The tracker can be viewed at the website: https://www.cfr.org/nigeria/nigeria-security-tracker/p29483