“Government will not rest until all the girls are rescued alive and reunited with their families.” That is a firm assurance from Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari to parents whose daughters were abducted in Chibok.
President Buhari reechoed this assurance he gave at a meeting with affected parents on the floor of the European Parliament where he spoke on Wednesday.
Over 200 schoolgirls of the Government girls secondary school in Chibok, northern Nigeria, were abducted by Boko Haram fighters in April 2014 as they prepared to write their examinations.
Some of the girls fled but over 100 more are being held captive by Boko Haram. There are fears the group which had threatened to marry the girls off, may be using them as suicide bombers – as part of a new strategy of using females for their missions.
In his address to Members of the Europeean Parliament in Strasbourg however, President Buhari recounted some gains made by the Nigerian military in their fight against the militant group.
“All areas which were formerly under the control of Boko Haram in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe in north-eastern Nigeria, are again under our control. The displaced are gradually returning to their homes,“said Muhammadu Buhari.
The leader of Africa’s biggest economy asked the international community to provide more support to people in the Lake Chad region, who for the past six years have been terrorised by the Boko Haram sect.
He also called for closer collaboration between Europe and Nigeria to eradicate corruption and other criminal activities.
Gen. Buhari wraps up his European tour on Thursday with a visit to London where he will attend a conference on ‘Supporting Syria and The Region’.
A statement from the Nigerian presidency said President Buhari “will use the opportunity of his participation in the conference … to continue his push for more global understanding, collaboration and support for Nigeria and other countries in the front lines of the war against terrorism.”