ABDUCTEDSCHOOLGIRLS: CAN accuses Borno governor of conspiracy,Police offer N50 million for information on abducted girls

School girls

The Nigerian Police Force has staked a N50 million reward for anyone with credible and accurate information towards their freedom.

According to a statement Wednesday from the Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Mr. Frank Mba, the circumstances require the cooperation of all citizens to salvage the situation and “any information given would be treated anonymously and with utmost confidentiality.”

To that end, he urged any citizen with useful information not to be afraid to give it to the police through any of the following telephone numbers: 09 291 4649, 0808 177 7309, 0805 554 7536, 0803 212 5050, 0803 461 7591 and 0803 596 9731.

On its part, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Northern chapter, has warned Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima and his administration to urgently “stop playing politics with the lives of the children of other people and produce without delay the 238 missing students of Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok” alleging that the Maiduguri government knows their whereabouts.

CAN demanded an explanation from Alhaji Shettima, Commissioner for Education, Principal and Chief Security Officer of the school on what they did and did not do that “led to the ferrying away of innocent children who went to sit for an examination for the betterment of their tomorrow.”

In a statement jointly signed by its Secretary-General Prof. Daniel Babayi and the Public Relations Officer (PRO) Sunday Oibe, the association urged the Federal Government and the international community to “prevail on the governor to do everything within his powers to produce the children” who it said it has “on good authority” that some of the children are being raped numerous times daily.

The statement released in Abuja runs thus: “How come that the parents of these children have not been able to come out and say anything? Are they saying that these children are orphans and do not have parents? We demand an explanation because from our investigation, parents of these children are facing intimidation and threats from the government of Borno State. That is why they could not come out to speak; but they are nursing their pains in silence. We also reject a situation where they will turn our daughters to be sex slaves of these criminals called Boko Haram members. Some of these children are being compelled to be wives of these criminals. If you want to marry somebody’s daughter, you must seek the consent of her parents and not to ferry under-aged children and perpetrate a lot of havoc on them.

“The abduction of these girls seems a resurrection of what the Christian communities in Northern Nigeria have been suffering for centuries in the hands of the Emirs and Imams regarding forceful conversion and abduction of Christian girls. Borno State government should be reminded that the fundamental human rights of these people should be respected and protected.

“The governor should provide immediate explanation because we know that some people want to sacrifice these children on the altar of politics. There is a limit to which Christians would tolerate all these abnormalities. We suspect a conspiracy among all of these characters including the Governor, Commissioner, Principal and CSO since none of the daughters of the teachers and Principal were abducted.

“Since the abduction of some female students in Chibok Local Government Area of Borno State, Northern CAN has decided to be silent for some reasons. We have decided that we will make statements when we have all the facts of the matter. It may interest Nigerians to know that we have fundamental questions which demand one million answers. Since the abduction of these girls over two weeks ago, has Borno State Governor constituted any panel of investigation with a view to making its report public? How did the 253 female students disappear from the school into thin air, why did the Commissioner, Principal, Vice Principal and CSO (all Muslims) ignore the valid advice of WAEC on the security implication of writing exams in the school and the need to have a centre where the children’s lives will be secured?

“How did Boko Haram carry over 200 students and their food stolen by these criminals from the school? Was it carried with trailer? Why is it that since this issue came up, no single photograph of the abducted children was made public by the school authorities? After all, they were preparing for exams and may have submitted their photographs and where were the daughters of the Principal, Vice Principal and CSO when the abduction took place?”

CAN added: “We hope that this is not a political gimmick to carry out a political conspiracy against these daughters of Nigerians, future mothers of Nigeria and citizens who want to be leaders of tomorrow.

“So these are the questions; we have done our investigations, we are begging the international community, we are begging the Federal Government of Nigeria and the press to ask these legitimate questions from the Governor, Commissioner, Principal and CSO of the school because Chibok is a predominantly Christian area. What we are after is the safety and future of these children; whether they are Christians or Muslims or our enemies doesn’t matter. They are Nigerians, first and foremost.”

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