#BringOurGirlsBack Abuja Protest – Live Blog

Bring Back our girls protest

Women in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, organizing as “Women for Peace and Justice”, are staging a peaceful protest to press the government to act swiftly to release the remaining 230 female students kidnapped from their hostel in a secondary school in Chibok, Borno State.

About 243 girls, students of the Government Secondary School, GGSC, were abducted by members of the extremist Boko Haram sect on April 14. Forty-three of the girls escaped captivity and were reunited with their families. But the bulk of the students are still held by their abductors without much of a showing of tact to free the schoolgirls by the government.

The protest today is expected to push the government into showing more concern and acting seriously to free the schoolgirls.

Premium Times’ reporters are in Abuja and joining the protest and will bring you live updates as it proceeds.

The protest is largely expected to be peaceful. But recently, protests against the government in Abuja have been met with security highhandedness since the former Rivers State police commissioner, Joseph Mbu, took leadership of the Abuja police command.

Abuja is also home to special government security forces.

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The lady in purple is Sarah Ishaya. She is from Chibok. She has three sisters, ages 15 to 18, among the abducted schoolgirls. She’s traumatized and could not say a word.

Asa, Nigeria’s famous singer lends her voice to the protest.

15.32

The protesters have left the Unity Fountain start off venue and heading towards the Eagle Square where they are expected to turn into the National Assembly. The protest is gathering crowd as it proceeds. The protesters are closely monitored by security agents, including the Police Commissioner of Abuja Police Command, Joseph Mbu.

15.42

So far, the protest is proceeding peacefully. Some parts of the trail, from the Transcorp Hilton hotel area, close to the starting point is blocked. And the sky is dark, and heavy. It may rain soon.

15.44

It is raining heavily now but most of the protesters seem not deterred and marching in the rain. The Security officials are not deterred too. Protesters are now approaching the National Assembly area.

16.18

The protesters, having defied the rain, are now leaving the National Assembly for the presidential villa, Aso Rock. Former Education Minister, Oby Ezekwesili and a senior lawyer, Femi Falana is among the protesters. The police have so far been non violent and are leading the way.

16.24

"All we are saying, give us our girls... all we are saying, give us our girls..." the protesters chant as they head for the Presidential Villa.

16.28

Oby Ezekwesili: All we are saying... Crowd: Give us our girls... Oby Ezekwesili: When? Crowd: NOW! The crowd chants louder as they march towards the villa.

16.32

The protesters have changed their course and are returning to the start point. It is not clear why they are not going to Aso Rock anymore. We will find out why.

16.37

Femi Falana, a senior Nigerian lawyer and member of the ongoing National Conference told Premium Times he joined the protest because he is "human" and a "father."

16.40

The rain has let up. The the protest continues as the protesters, now all drenched, make their way back to Unity Fountain.

16.51

Femi Falana addressing the protesters as they return to the Unity Fountain. His speech is followed by a series of others. chibok girls protest

17.12

The protest is coming to an end. Protesters are beginning to disperse with a promise of returning the following day of the schoolgirls are not rescued. 20140430_163729 20140430_163737 20140430_163800

17.18

Chibok school girls protest

17.41

Oby Ezekwesili thanked everyone that participated. She said the protest will continue if in 24 hours the girls are not rescued yet. chibok girls protest4

18.10

The lady in purple is Sarah Ishaya, she from Chibok.  She couldn't talk to PREMIUM TIMES because she was crying but one of her sisters with her,  Esther Emmanuel, said three of Mrs Ishaya's sisters, ages 15 to 18, are among the Chibok Schoolgirls abducted on April 14.
Ms. Emmanuel said one of her cousins was abducted too.
chibok girls protest5

18.11

  • Preston Laye

    This is an unnecessary protest.Politically induced an it won’t help the effort of the military as they’re been ridiculed.

    • Gudi

      Wow, you think so? What and how would you react if your daughter(s) are among them? What they want is the political will from this weakling administration.

    • oba

      I guess u are 1 of them…… 4get about politics n if it’s politics let me them release those girls. Tell your oga @ d top 2 be serious. It’s only heartless and shameless person that will tag this Politically induced. If your daughter is one of them, I know what you can do.

    • Ralia Ahmad

      how is it politically induced. pls if
      you do not have any meaningful comment to make shut
      up.

    • Folahan

      This is the most shameful comments i have heard so far from Mr jonathan defendants

      • Emy

        Please let us not dignify this Fellow by responding to his comment. Just Ignore him.

      • Preston Laye

        When is the APC the very sponsors of both the protest and the kidnapping will stage theirs? Shamelessly idiots and propagandist.

  • Ayo Odunsi

    Jobless and hopeless protesters who are determined to endanger the lives of the young girls.

    It is a pity that the Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani and the APC who initiated the abduction of the girls are playing politics and desiring to use the situation of the girls as an oppotunity to add to their decision to make the country ungovernable for President Goodluck Jonathan.

    The guide book of barbaric Islam >>>> the Koran >>>>> clearly stipulates that the girls should be married to Boko Haram …… these protesters should direct their protests against the Koran.

    Let the girls be married to Boko Haram as stipulated in the Koran that guides barbaric Islam …. nothing less !!!

    • Naijagogoodagain

      I am sure your mama is very proud of you! You are a reflection of her!

    • Night Crawler

      Watch your mouth stop insulting women who where protesting, i hope and pray it happens to one of your family will love to see the reaction on your face… smh

    • Jules

      Kai…Ayo Odunsi, you are such a wild animal

    • Abubakar Sfada

      U are nt a complete human being, will u allow ur sister or daughter to married by force, may god reward u wit the pain that those are on,

  • Darlington Mudiaga Atumu

    we need these protest in borno state, adamawa state and yobe state….let the women in those states join forces and march to their state houses of assembly and offices of the governors…while the men march to the local government offices then head towards known boko haram camps to free these girls considering the fact that the military seems to have lost the plot…if 1 million men invade those boko haram camp then these terrorist will run away

    • redeem

      “The Abducted Girls…Who is really fooling who?! 1. How many students are in that village school that 230 of them were kidnapped in just one night raid? 2. Are they all boarding students? 3. Why did it take the school authorities/Borno State government almost one week to realize that the figure of the supposedly abducted students was no longer 124? 4. Is it that easy to escape from Boko Haram that almost 40 of the girls were able to flee? 5. How did they find their way home from the supposed forest that they were taken to? 6. Why did the Principal of the school recant after giving information to the military authorities that soldiers rescued some of the girls?I’m seriously persuaded that the Principal has not told the whole truth. She just might be under some kind of pressure or influence. It happy new year for the janjaweeds in APC

      • Night Crawler

        You are ignorant, i pray one of your family members should be there and will love to see the reaction on your face

  • Preston Laye

    Bring Education to the North an banished ignorant,child marrige, and the Almajiri systerm should have being the reason for the protest an not this shamelessly protest.Address the root an there will be peace and justice.

  • shei

    It’s the christian women that will b on d fore front..the Muslim parents haven’t staged such protest.. the Muslims will always celebrate wen Christians are caught up wt insurgents..the Christians should ask them self wen have Muslims ever protested for Christians been caught up wt insurgents? And they should count how many Muslims woment were at the protest with them?

  • shei

    The Muslims will always point @ the Christians for the insurgents to attack..n the Christians r out there protesting for the muslim..

    • Night Crawler

      My brother when a child is involve, everyone needs to come together because innocent it takes 9 months to deliver a child

  • gbotibgo gbo

    Have we lost every sense of responsibility? Let those who have dogs as pets and no children keep saying rubbish but let those who know the passion of parentage put sentiments and stupidity aside and call on the relevant authority to be up and doing. So far, they have failed to justify the huge security votes they collect at our collective expense. Until we learn to come together to fight injustice no matter whose ox is involved ….

  • Omo Odua

    Most of us are aware that the whole thing might be a blackmail. The list of the names , addresses, photographs and names of the parents of the affected school girls should be made available to the army, police, SSS, civil defence so that people can leak the guarded secret that most of the girls are not missing but with their parents. How long can this blackmail survive ? When Boko Haram dressed in military uniform arrived the school claiming that they came to rescue the students, why didnt theprincipal call the military commander to confirm ? Even in peace period, honest people call to confirm the veracity of a messenger’s message. APC and The Borno State gov should be held responsible for this ‘false abduction’, in fact many of these borno women know about this lies and propaganda against the FG. The APC wants GEJ to talk or comment about the abduction so they can pick some statements to hold on to (as usual), but The President is too smart for them. They are getting too uncomfortable about the rallies GEJ has been holding and the support he has been gathering, hence they want to stop these by any means. How can some senators know the movement of the girls and the terrorists without the knowledge of the security operatives and the military? One thing i know is that GEJ and the military can never be blackmailed or tricked. We are watching ……

  • shei

    The united states,france and prominent figures in nigeria have pointed out the governors of these states with heavy prevelance of insurgents r sponsored by the governors of the states..fellow nigeria why haven’t there been any form of protest in these states condemning their involvement in insurgence activity? Why haven’t there been protest asking them to return these innocent abducted school girls? Why asking the president who knows nothing about these abduction to return these girls? N if these Christian protesters in abuja r really fighting for these girls to gain their freedom, perform a true protest mobilise n march to borno, bauchi, adamawa, yobe, maidugari, kano and demand the freedom of theses innocent school girls n stop fooling your selfs protesting in abuja and lagos..your protest in abuja and lagos is like pouring water to an un completed building without fire and turning a blind eye to the next building on fire.. stop deceiving your self’s with aimless and unwarranted protest..

    • CONCERNED9JA

      The president should not be blamed? Your comment is unbelievable. If this is a genuine post, and not Omokriminal-sponsored, then this country would remain in perpetual bondage. I dont want to share the same country with people like you. Jonathan not to be blamed? You must be joking. Being president is not about embezzling money alone, it is also about taking blames. So why did the South Korean prime minister resgn after the ferry disaster in which over 200 students were dead? He could have argued as you fanatics of calamitous Jona would.

      • shei

        Mr concerned9jA advocate that these northern elites and governors sponsoring these insurgence should resign and face the heavy weight of international criminal court tribunal for their role in the on going violence in the country..advocate for full scale military administration in these states n persecution of perpetrators in the affected states..why don’t u support any form of protest on these exposed northern elites and governors.
        Mr concerned9jA continue supporting evil and continue being used as an agent of evil rather than an ambassador of truth and justice
        Continue turning a blind eye to justice against perpetrators n keep on discrediting the works and effort of a peace makers..from all indication u support politicians that vowed to make the country ungovernable for the president..i c a true enemy of the state like Mr concerned9jA in this forum..why not go back n keep support the insurgence n their violence as well as their sponsors..please find people in the forum that share your views n chat wt them..darkness n light can never come together..

  • SUNDAY OGUNKANMI

    Nigeria has never sunk to this level. This government and the ruling party have demonstrated they are being run by animals and not human beings. Even, the international media are so touched by this mad abduction and it is no more secret that the government of Jonathan has no moral grounds to remain in office again. The Evening Standard of London, a tabloid whose circulation is in excess of one million daily joined in the condemnation of the abduction and the subsequent ineptitude of this immoral Jonathan government. In a short, but pungent editorial this afternoon, the Evening Standard, blasted the lame-duck Jonathan government and the military in what it called their ineffectual attempts to stage a counter-initiative.
    The tabloid echoed the widely-held belief in certain quarters that moles were always thwarting the military’s efforts in their offensives against Boko Haram.
    The clock is really ticking for this not-fit-for-purpose government.

    • Thepeople

      The west must be aware that Nigeria has no government they know it. What we call a government is a bunch of despicable hoodlums who would do anything to remain in power with only one intention and that is to steal public funds. How can we say we have a government when you build your house, provide your own electricity, have your own borehole, try to provide your own security.There are no jobs, no hospitals, no infrastructures, and people are been killed everyday in different community unrests. People who are supposed to be incharge do not care. All their care is how much they can Steal, steal, and steal. Yet we have more churches and mosques in Nigeria than anywhere in the west.Where in the world would such a terrible crime be committed against children and the government would sit easy? Moreover let all Nigerians remember we are potential victims of Boko Haram as we have no government to protect us. We should to continue to protest every day and in every city till those children are brought back.