Monday, 3 October 2016

Government contradicting itself on Chibok girls’ rescue

Addressing a press conference on Friday to mark 900 days since the girls were abducted, Obiageli Ezekwesili, leader of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) movement, said Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, and President Muhammadu Buhari are contradicting each other on the federal government’s efforts to rescue the abducted Chibok girls.

In her words:
“Two weeks ago, on 16 September 2016, the Nigerian government, speaking through the Minister of Information, gave an update on its efforts to rescue our missing girls, after a long period of silence. That update, covering activities between July 2015 and December 2015, was the first time ever that a degree of specificity about efforts to rescue the girls was provided by government since their abduction over twenty nine months ago,” Ezekwesili said.

“The substance of the update was material enough to merit our movement’s deep interrogation of what the federal government presented to the public as facts and to weigh their consistency with other statements it had previously made on the fate of our Chibok girls.
“We noted that the detailed account presented by the Minister of Information revealed activities related to rescue effort only up to December 2015. It is thus curious that there was no activity reported for the entire nearly nine months of 2016. So the question is; what was the federal government doing concerning the rescue of Chibok girls in the last nine months and why was nothing of that period captured in the Minister’s account?

“Our analysis also found at least five (5) confirmed or inferred instances of Presidential briefings and approvals for negotiation between officials of the Federal Government and the terrorists. We captured these very significant approvals of the president in the infographics that accompany this statement of our movement. We consider the fact of these Presidential approvals weighty material evidence that call to question the President’s many public statements that ‘his government does not have credible intelligence on the group holding the girls captive.’


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