Our girls will return – Chibok community replies Obasanjo

Members of the Chibok community in Borno State have faulted former president, Olusegun Obasanjo over his recent assertion that the 219 missing schoolgirls will never return again.

The girls were abducted from their hostels on April 14, 2014 by the Boko Haram insurgents.

Obasanjo had in a recent statement affirmed that it was practically impossible for the military operatives, who failed to rescue the girls within 72 hours, when there was a window of opportunity, to do so.

But in a quick reaction to the former president’s statement, some leaders of Chibok community said Obasanjo was entitled to his opinion on the matter.

One of the Chibok leaders, who spoke on behalf of the community, insisted that by God’s grace, the girls will return home alive.

The community leader who spoke with Leadership said: “Obasanjo is a respected former president and retired military officer who may have his reasons for making such statement but, to us, he is entitled to his opinion, because we still believe the girls are alive and can be rescued.

“Our hope lies on the fact that since their abduction, none of them has been found dead or alive; and that, to us, is a good sign that they are alive. We would have been worried had there been any form of report that some of the girls were found dead, or some have been rescued during the rescue operations that were carried out recently.

“Going by the activities of the Boko Haram terrorists in the last four years, one would be deceiving himself to say that they are not an intelligent lot. They know the high premium the world has placed on the need to rescue the girls; so the schoolgirls may be their priced asset for bargain when push comes to shove. We don’t know where they are, but we believe our girls are kept somewhere, either within or outside the country. And our prayer is that, one day, we may see them, even though we are not ruling out the fact that it is a difficult task and all of them may not be rescued at the end of the day.”