Women representing All Progressives Congress (APC) and Labour unions in Lagos State, Tuesday afternoon, joined the call for the rescue of the over 200 girls abducted by Boko Haram from a secondary school in Chibok, Borno State a month ago.
Led by Chief Mrs. Kemi Nelson a former Commissioner in the state, the women submitted a letter to the state governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, for onward dispatch to President Goodluck Jonathan, demanding, among other things the immediate and safe release of the girls.
In the letter read by Nelson before submission to the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Lateef Ibirogba, the women expressed dismay at the apparent inaction of the Federal Government towards securing the release of the girls.
They particularly accused the president and his government of insensitivity toward the incident, lamenting that despite the untoward happening and the fact that parents of those children were going through serious trauma, Jonathan danced publicly at a campaign rally of the Peoples Democratic Party in Kano State.
Noting that abduction of the Chibok girls was not the first of such incident in the country, the women told the president reminded the president of a first of such incidence in January.
“Like in the first kidnap on Tuesday 14th January 2014, Nigerians and indeed the entire world have not seen any positive action. Instead, and sadly too, the local and international media are awash with saddening reports which point to complicity of inaction by even the Nigerian Military,” Nelson said.
They expressed shock at Amnesty International’s revelation that Nigerian Military High Command was alerted four hours before the “unprecedented mass kidnap” and that even after the kidnap, the military kept away from immediately pursuing the terrorists in order to rescue the girls.
“Mr. President, we advise that you brace up to arrest the worsening security situation in the nation,” the women urged.
The women, however, expressed relief that the international community, notably the United States of America, Britain, France, China, Israel and countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), have all offered their assistance towards rescuing the girls.
Also, the State Councils of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) appealed to all well-meaning Nigerians, including religious leaders and the international community, to continue to put pressure on the terror group to release the girls unconditionally.
The unions said they have chosen to tow the line of peaceful approach to the resolution of the problem because of its sensitive nature, pointing out that if violence was employed, it could bring harm on the girls too.
“We call on Mr. President and our allies to spare no rod to ensure that the Chibok Girls are brought back to their families and the nation hail and alive. We know that they would have to undergo medical and psychological treatment to heal the horrors they may have been subjected to,” the unions said adding that if all Nigerians worked together as a single unit of humanity, insurgency would be defeated.
Warning against any attempt by the international community to turn Nigeria into a theatre of war with terrorists like Afghanistan, Pakistan and others, the unions said: “if we unleash the power of the working class within the confines of Nigeria and worldwide on anti-people regimes or terror forces like Boko Haram, such bodies would disintegrate and collapse.”
They demanded the unconditional release of the girls by Boko Haram, adding that they honestly hope that Nigeria labour movement would not be forced to declare full battle against the abductors of the Chibok girls before the reasonable is done.
Receiving the letters from the two groups on behalf of the governor, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Lateef Ibirogba, thanked them for identifying with the rest of Nigerians, particularly the affected families, to seek the release of the Chibok girls.
The Commissioner, who expressed sadness at the nature of the abduction of the girls whom he described as future leaders, prayed that they would be rescued and returned to their families in good health, adding that the global reaction to the abduction has been spontaneous.
He expressed hope that the Federal Government would not misconstrue the action to mean that it is being sponsored like was the case during the mass action over fuel crisis.
“We are all in this believing that since no nation thrives on violence and irregularities that we have now, the God we serve will bring back these children hale and hearty. We are happy that despite that some people in Abuja would have swept the issue under the carpet, the international community has taken it up and now we are all seeing the result and everybody is hearing the news globally,” Ibirogba said.
“We believe that everybody has a right to life and nobody should be denied that right whether a minor or an adult.”
Source: Huhu Online