Chibok Protest Spread To Rivers,Kwara State

MORE protests were staged yesterday over the abduction of schoolgirls in Borno State.
There were protests in Port Harcourt and Ilorin .
In Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi promised to support his Borno State counterpart, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, to ensure the release of the abducted girls.
The protesters, who converged on the Isaac Boro Park, carried placards, and banners with inscriptions, such as: “Destroy the beast, Boko Haram now”; “Bring back our girls”; “Give us back our future”; and “Borno elders, Federal Government all parties involved”.
The Protesters, led by the Executive Director, Niger Delta Civil Society Coalition, Mr. Anyakwe Nsrimovu on the Federal Government to ensure the girls’ release.
Receiving the protesters at the Government House, Port Harcourt, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr. George Feyii, who represented the governor promised that the message would be conveyed to the Presidency.
Feyii said Amaechi would support the efforts to ensure that the girls were released to their families.
In a letter to President Goodluck Jonathan, sent through Amaechi, the protesters expressed fear over the security challenges in the country, appealing that the government should not allow the nation slip into anarchy.
“We are worried that these are Nigerian children seeking education, seeking an opportunity for a better future for our dear country. Their enrolment in Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, was not just about their immediate families and Chibok community, but about our dear nation.
“We are worried that among these abducted children are future ministers, future administrators, entrepreneurs and, perhaps, Nigeria’s first female president. We are worried that none of them may be released, if we do nothing now to find, rescue and protect those innocent girls.”
Women, under the aegis of Coalition of Women Associations (COWAS), in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, staged a peaceful protest to solidarise with the parents of the abducted schoolgirls.
The protesters converged on the premises of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Press Centre on Offa Road.
The coalition comprises Community-Based Organisations (CBOs), Faith-Based Organisations (FBOs), women journalists and women organisations.
From the NUJ Press Centre, they marched to the Government House, where they were received by Deputy Governor Peter Kishira. The placard carrying women also presented a letter to the deputy governor for transmission to President Jonathan.
From the Government House, they moved to  the Emir of Ilorin’s palace and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) secretariat.
Some of the placards read: “Every child counts regardless of her background”, “We are here to know the fate of our children”; “Do not allow those children to be used as instruments of baby making”; “Oh Allah, save us from unjust leaders”; “Stop killing innocent souls to settle scores”; and “Education is the bedrock of any society”.
Addressing the women on behalf of Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, Kishira said: “I have personally appeared before you to receive you on this occasion, which is a demonstration of concern about what has happened to our country. I believe I am speaking to women who are experienced. Because you can imagine, at our age, definitely when we speak on matters like this, we are talking from experience. I lost my first daughter in 1980. So I know what it takes to lose a child.
“Those parents who are here and who have that experience know that it is an experience you never forget. I agree with you on behalf of the governor, who is also a parent, that there is nobody who is a Nigerian, who will not feel it, with respect to what has happened our daughters.
“I want to assure you that your messages will get to the right quarters. The President had already spoken. He is also concerned and we believe with all our efforts and prayers, the girls will be rescued. Because when you have this kind of experience you have nobody to depend on, except God.”
Presenting the letter of protest, Coordinator Bileqees Oladimeji said:  “As a mother, I know the situation in which parents of these girls are: talk of the trauma, the mental torture and the sleepless nights. Mothers are bound to remember the pain of carrying the babies for nine months in their wombs; the pain at labour and delivery. Talk of how mothers will continually imagine the cries of their children shouting for help but without hope. Imagine what these children will be thinking, that they have been abandoned by their country, the family and their parents.
“Three weeks have passed, our government has not been able to do anything concrete in providing a positive sense of hope for the recovery of our own children. Many commentators accused us of being insensitive to the feelings of these children and they might be right, until something positive is obtained from our efforts, we would be seen as not doing anything.”


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

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