Finally, Presidential Committee visits Chibok

Some parents of the abducted girls discuss on what to present to the visiting presidential panel at GSS Chibok

The trip was the first by senior government civilian officials

A presidential fact-finding committee on the abduction of over 250 female students from their hostel at Government Secondary School Chibok, on April 14, finally visited the town Thursday, a week after suspending the trip.

The trip was the first by senior civilian officials since the abduction seven weeks ago. Military commanders had visited the town in April.

A planned visit by President Goodluck Jonathan was suspended abruptly amid security concerns.

The chairman of the presidential committee, Ibrahim Sabo, who led a three man entourage to Chibok Thursday, said the panel was in the town to sympathise with the parents and to assure them that even though his team was received amidst wailing by some of mothers of the abducted girls, the parents will rejoice soon.

“I am sure we will be here rejoicing with you when the girls regain their freedom,” he said.

Mr. Sabo also informed the gathering which assembled at the GSS Chibok, where the girls were taken captives that President Jonathan was considering all options available to have the girls freed.

Speaking on behalf of the parents, Mark Enoch, pleaded with the government to do everything within its powers to rescue the girls.
“Since the Chief of Defence Staff had announced to the whole world that the Army knows where our daughters are kept, all we can beg them is to try and rescue them alive,” Mr. Mark whose two daughters are among the abducted girls said.

PREMIUM TIMES’ Sani Tukur, who is in Chibok, said over 100 parents, as well as the management of the school, gathered as early as 9 a.m. outside the town’s motor park to receive the government team.

The crowd later moved to the secondary school. There was heavy security presence in and around Chibok with some of the military van bearing the United Nations number plates.

The Ibrahim Sabo-led committee shelved its earlier plan last week to visit Chibok despite being in Maiduguri for almost a week.

The reschedule was because “the security people said they could not guarantee their security,” one source said.
Mr. Sabo denied that claim.

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