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CAN Seeks Rescue Of Remaining Chibok Girls

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) on Saturday demanded the intensified effort and decisive action of the Federal Government to ensure the rescue of the remaining Chibok girls.

The Christian body said the pain and anguish experienced by the parents of the abducted girls was deeply felt and that it was not only a matter of national importance but also a test of commitment to upholding the rights and safety of Nigerian citizens.

CAN made this known in a statement signed by its National Director for Education, Youth and Women Development, Rev Ozumba Nicodemus, on Saturday.

The 14th of April, 2024, would mark 10 years since 276 girls of the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, a community in Borno State, were abducted by the Boko Haram terrorist group on the same date in 2014, during the tenure of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

In an October 2022 status report by the BringBackOurGirls campaign group, of the 276 kidnapped girls, 57 escaped captivity after jumping from the trucks on which they were being transported, 107 of them were released, 16 were rescued by the military, and 96 of them remained missing.

However, the leader of the Chibok Parents Association, Yakubu Nneki, had told our correspondents that 138 of the girls had been rescued or released, while 82 of them were still in captivity.

CAN said the case of the girls could not be swept under the carpet, and that it represented a horrific tragedy.

The statement partly reads, “The case of the Chibok girls cannot be swept under the carpet, as it represents a horrific tragedy that has left an indelible mark on the nation’s conscience.

“The trauma experienced by the 276 abducted girls from Nigeria is unimaginable.

“The pain and anguish felt by their parents, who have endured sleepless nights filled with hopelessness, are deeply felt by CAN. We cannot remain silent while their children remain in captivity, yearning for freedom and reunion with their families.

“CAN hereby reiterate its unwavering demand for the government to intensify efforts and take decisive action to rescue the remaining children still held hostage. This is not only a matter of national importance but also a test of our commitment to upholding the rights and safety of our citizens, particularly the most vulnerable among us.”

The Association also urged the government to mobilise available resources and collaborate with international partners to secure the girls.

Nicodemus further implored the international community, humanitarian organizations, and well-meaning individuals to join CAN in advocating for the release of the girls.

“Together, we can amplify our voices and exert greater pressure on the abductors to bring an end to this prolonged ordeal”, the statement read.

“CAN also states that it will continue to engage with relevant stakeholders and utilize all available avenues to shed light on their plight and secure their release, while also calling on Nigerians to show “unwavering support for the families of the Chibok girls and demonstrate our collective determination to bring them back home to reunite with their families”, the statement added.

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