Security beefed up at Nigeria’s Presidential Villa as Chibokgirls protesters plan to meet Jonathan

FILE PHOTO: The last time the BBOG group attempted to protest in the presidential villa, they were stopped half way.

Nigerian authorities stepped up security around the presidential villa in Abuja Tuesday, after the BringBackOurGirls campaigners announced a fresh plan to meet President Goodluck Jonathan over the continued captivity of more than 200 schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram in April.

The campaigners are pushing for the rescue of the girls kidnapped from the Government Girls’ Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State.

The group plans to march to the presidential villa “to engage” with Mr. Jonathan and persuade him to act and rescue the girls held hostage by the insurgent group for six months.

A statement by the group’s media coordinator, Rotimi Olawale, Monday, said the #BringBackOurGirls Abuja Family will march to Presidential Villa on Tuesday to discuss and hear directly from the president, the status of efforts being made towards rescuing the over 200 abducted girls.

Mr. Olawale said the group will also demand an urgent rescue of the girls.

He said the rally is in continuation of the group’s global week of action to mark the girls’ sixth month stay with their abductors.

“We, the #BringBackOurGirls Abuja family, wish to notify the members of the public that we have requested (for) an appointment, and will be marching to meet with our President on Tuesday October 14, 2014,” Mr. Olawale said.

Mr. Olawale enjoined members of the public concerned about the girl’s abduction to join the presidential march.

The group’s first attempt to meet with Mr. Jonathan May 22 was met with resistance from security operatives at the Eagle Square where they were prevented from proceeding into the presidential villa in Aso Rock.

However, the protesters were met by a presidential delegate led by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Pius Anyim.

The delegation’s spokesperson, the Minister of State Federal Capital Territory, Olajumoke Akinjide, reading from a letter addressed to the protesters by President Goodluck Jonathan, said the Federal Government is appreciative and supportive of their efforts.

Mr. Jonathan told the crowd that terrorism is a global challenge, giving instances of attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and Iran.

Tuesday’s march was scheduled to begin at Unity Fountain, located close to Transcorp Hilton Hotels, Maitama, and proceed to the State House through the Federal Secretariat.

But by 8.20 a.m., the government deployed a large team of armed officers at the two major gates leading to the Villa, apparently to forestall possible breakdown of order.

At the gate approaching from the Fire Service side of Asokoro, armed policemen and soldiers were stationed at the traffic light junction before the usual security checkpoint.

The same situation played out at the federal secretariat end of the entrance.

Armed police officers and soldiers from the Brigades of Guards were stationed at a spot between the Villa Gate and the access road that leads to the National Assembly.
(NAN)


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  • Chris1408

    Aso Rock belongs to Nigerians not GEJ property. Nigerians have every right to protest there. Anyway, why protest to a president that careless about the people’s welfare.

    • bugwu

      Do Americans go to white house to protest? APC all your plans will fail.

      • Chris1408

        Yes they do. And anybody can take a white house tour. Can you tour Aso Rock? Also American government works for citizens.

        • Ay

          Chris1408 … leave that illiterate. The only place he knows is Alaba market. Civilized countries allow protests anywhere in their country without harrassment

  • the truth

    Every body has the right to vote and love any body they desire. If you believe corruption, impunity and the whole state of backwardness started under jonathan please vote him out. but if you believe this man has really performed notwithstanding the impediments brought to his government by a section of the country who vowed to make the country ungovernable for him if he was elected in 2011 please vote him for one more term.

    • Ay

      … i will contribute my quota to voting him out! A man who ruled for six years (and has been number 2 for additional two years) has no moral justification telling us he inherited backwardness. The problem of Nigeria is greater than what only “goodluck” can fix. We need a fighter, bold and intelligent man up there!

      • the truth

        can any president rule if there is no cooperation or a grand plot to distabilise his government. name one nigerian president that ruled apart from gowon where there was a drawn line from his inception by a section of the country.

        • Ay

          Mr. truth if you know that your dummy president isnt capable of tackling obstacles on his way, why do you want me to vote him again???? Ruling a country like Nigeria is complicated and if you cant deal with the situation, then you arent fit to rule. Let’s keep looking for someone who can deal with the situation – not someone giving excuses every time

          • the truth

            mr ay, we are having a matured conversation here, let’s refrain from abuses and foul words please. you would agree with me that peace is the sustainable catalyst for nation building and development. Even if you elect an angel and a particular section of the country has waged war on that angel he would definitely fail. I asked you a question which nigerian president has faced full scale war by a section of the country apart from gowon. i will still make this even further show me any country who are faced with this kind of situation and making strides? Please believe me we all wish the best for nigeria but the criticisms are sometimes unfounded. It is sad that we have all thrown away the statements from acf leaders before and after the 2011 election. has this crisis escalated or decreased from the time of their statements up until now

        • Man_Enough

          will there ever be a time when there would not be obstacles for a president of more than 200 million people? let jonathan go and wait for such a time.

    • Chris1408

      Excuse, excuse, excuse. The man lacks presidential qualities and abilities.

      • the truth

        so tell me which president has faced this situation of full scale war from a particular section of the country apart from gowon. you would agree with me without peace there is no growth, stability or economic strides. in all of these we are still moving forward

        • Chris1408

          Gowon fought civil and developed Nigeria at the same time. GEJ is commander in chief, he controls the entire uniform services. If he can’t fight rag tag Boko Haram, what happens if we are invaded by organized military? Don’t hold fort for a mediocre president. How and where are we moving forward? Except for corruption index

          • the truth

            nobody is holding up for him, i did mention gowon in my sentence if you checked well. gowon is a good reference point. In the 1967-1970 war with biafra, while the war was going on how was developmental strides in the nation, lest you forget this was a military president and gej is a civilian president. You will agree with me that if your preferred choice of president is sworn in and a part of the country decides to wage war on him, he would also struggle. If you believe boko haram is rag tag army with all the evidences you have seen of their military capabilities, then you are not been fair.

          • Chris1408

            What’s so good about Nigeria today? That you’re truly proud of. In 2014, we are still complaining of bad roads, Nigeria doesn’t have an hospital, no electricity, everything is expensive, corruption is at all time high. I can go on and on. Please don’t talk about other failed rulers before him.

    • Nigeria

      Yes, my friend Mr. “the truth” this is how people should show their “NEUTRALITY”. These people don’t know you. You are “Neutral” always and say the “truth”. The only thing is that sometimes “the truth” and “Neutrality” expose your Love for Mr. J……. and that par*y, isn’t it?

  • Ay

    Am sure they wont meet him at home! He must have gone to hide in neighbour’s house before they get there. Alternatively, Abati will be busy right now drafting the speech he will read to the protesters when they come … dullard!