On May 29 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari during his inauguration speech at the Eagle Square said, “we cannot claim to have defeated Boko Haram without rescuing the Chibok Girls and all other innocent persons held hostage by insurgents”. It’s been 2,877 days (that is 7 years, 10 months and 17 days) since then and 96 of our Chibok Girls are still in captivity, with their parents completely left in the dark as to what the government of President Buhari is doing to get them rescued. On May 29 2023, 45 days from today, President Buhari’s term in office will end and his promise to our Chibok Girls will go unfulfilled.

Today marks 3,287 days since 276 school girls from Government Secondary School, Chibok, were abducted by the terrorist group, Boko Haram. Our hearts remain shattered at the failure of President Buhari’s government to close this shameful chapter in our country’s history. The negative level of attention and priority that this administration has given to our Chibok Girls is not only disgraceful, but a de-motivator for poor parents who are not convinced that educating their daughters is the best decision they can make for themselves and society at large.

For 9 grueling years, Chibok Girls’ parents have desperately waited for their daughters to return home. The #BringBackOurGirls Movement has constantly declared that our Chibok Girls are a symbol of the Girl Child in Nigeria and the world, and that the abduction and the prolonged captivity of the remaining 96 girls has become an assault on girl child education especially in the North East.

Our Movement has endlessly called on the government of President Muhammadu Buhari to fulfil the campaign promise he made in 2015. All to no avail. Nearly eight years ago, barely a day passed without President Muhammadu Buhari talking about the Chibok Girls and the need for their urgent rescue. Today, both him and his government are completely silent on the issue. He has simply moved on and forgotten about our precious girls.

It is a known fact that a nation that leaves behind its female population is an underdeveloped society. The unresolved plight of the abductions is regarded as a de-motivator for poor parents who should be convinced that educating their daughters is the best decision they can make for themselves and society at large. The growth of our nation is under threat.

Until all the abducted girls can be accounted for, the promise of Nigeria’s constitution, that the welfare of Nigerians shall be the primary purpose of the government, will continue to ring hollow.

We therefore call on President Muhammadu Buhari one more time, to fulfil the promise he made to our Chibok Girls on May 29 2015, which extends to Leah Sharibu, and all other innocent persons held hostage by insurgents.

Signed: For and on behalf of #BringBackOurGirls

Florence Ozor
Gapani Yanga
Aisha Yesufu
Oby Ezekwesili

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