Allen Manasseh, strategic team member of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) group, says over 20 parents of the Chibok girls have died from health complications induced by the protracted wait for the return of their children.
In April 2014, 276 schoolgirls of Government Girls’ Secondary School (GGSS) Chibok, Borno state, were abducted by Boko Haram insurgents.
The girls were preparing for their final examinations when the insurgents attacked in the middle of the night and abducted them.
Seven years later, 112 of the girls are still missing.
In a chat with Arise TV on Wednesday, Manasseh said over 20 parents have died while waiting anxiously for the missing girls.
He accused the government of doing the minimum to address the concerns of the parents, demanding that the matter be moved to the office of the vice-president.
“The level of engagement with the parents should change; there’s no date on the issue of rescue. We have over 20 parents that died already from blood pressure-related complications; renal failure as a result of blood pressure. 20 plus parents died, nothing happened,” Manasseh said.
“The level of engagement to the Chibok parents is nothing to write home about. The Chibok girls issue was domiciled in the ministry of women affairs. What authority or administrative function does the minister of women affairs have to do with security, rescue, or anything about the Chibok girls. The ministry can support the Chibok parents in terms of welfare but this issue is more critical and it should be domiciled in at least the office of vice-president. That’s what we asked for.
“It was domiciled in the office of women affairs and nobody knows what’s happening there. Periodically, all that happens is when it’s the commemoration of April 14, some people will be mobilised to go to Chibok with some bags of rice and some change to be given to Chibok parents.”
BBOG has renewed its campaign for the release of the remaining Chibok schoolgirls.