The Bring Back Our Girls group, BBOG, on Sunday described the inability of government to ensure the return of abducted Chibok girls as a monumental failure on the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
Speaking during a protest organised to mark the 1000th day since the abduction of over 200 girls from their secondary school in Chibok, the group’s leader, Obi Ezekwesili, said it was unimaginable that the girls would remain with their captors, in a country with a known leadership, this long.
“We never imagined that it would last more than 30 days. Then 60 days came, then two years and today. The saddest occurrence in the history of our country.
“We have had two governments and yet we have 195 girls who are yet to be released from terrorists, 1000 days after they were abducted.
“We had said 500 days after they were abducted that 500 days was too long for citizens to wait for their daughters to be rescued. Today is 500 days times two. You can imagine how much of a monumental failure it is that 195 of our Chibok girls are still in terrorists’ captivity,” she said.
In its official statement on Sunday, the group restated its earlier claim that the government had relaxed in its commitment toward the return of the girls.
It also compared the response of the Buhari administration to the plight of abducted citizens to that of the previous Goodluck Jonathan administration.
“As with the Jonathan administration, the Buhari administration’s response to issues about the Chibok girls is representative of its handling of other issues – insecurity, welfare of internally displaced persons, military welfare, corruption and poor governance,” the group said.
President Buhari had in an earlier statement on Sunday restated his administration’s commitment to the release of the abducted girls. The administration has been able to secure the release of 21 of the girls through negotiation with Boko Haram, while another one was recently freed by soldiers.
The BBOG began its campaign for the return of Chibok girls two weeks after they were abducted on April 14, 2014.
Police officers had attempted to stop the group from protesting on Sunday, creating a barricade close to the Aso Villa gate, where the group had encamped during its last protest.
Consequently, the group stopped at the three-arm zone junction and continued its program.