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Published On: Fri, Jan 31st, 2020

Group bemoans continued detention of Leah Sharibu by Boko Haram

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By Miriam Humbe

Following the disturbing news of Leah Sharibu Motherhood status released by Sahara reporter last weekend, the Global Centre for Humanitarian Services Peace and Development (GLOHSPED) joined the global community to sympathize with her family and demand for her freedom irrespective of her status.
President of the group, Mr. Collins Ogokeh-Green said the report alleged she was forced to accept Islam and married to Boko Haram commander responsible for her baby but the spokesperson of the family- Dr. Gloria Puldu stated the desire of her family to have her alive and safe- with or without a baby.
Since the release of the news, Nigerians took to social media to express their displeasure over the continued abandonment of Leah by the federal government in the hands of the heartless and barbaric terrorist group.
Recall that Leah Sharibu was among the 110 schoolgirls of Government Girls’ Science and Technical College (GGSTC), Dapchi in Yunusari local government of Yobe State who were abducted by the Boko Haram terrorist group on February 19, 2018. The federal government on March 21, 2018 announced the unconditional release of 106 school girls (inclusive of 2 other persons) except Leah Sharibu while other reports alleged that 5 other girls died while in Boko Haram detention. Media report suggested that her detention was due to her refusal to convert to Islam.
Mr. Ogokeh-Green stated that the abduction just like the case of over 276 kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls in 2014 and some activities of the terrorist group over the years occur in similar pattern with initial uncertainties over the actual number of casualty (affected victims), delayed response by the security agencies, aftermath attack blame game and unfulfilled promise of the abducted girls release by the government to mention a few.
He pointed out that since her abduction, there have been reports of attempted escape of Leah Sharibu and her recapture by the insurgents narrated by the released school girls, an audio circulated on social media in August 2018 in which She was pleading to the federal government for her freedom and support to her family from Nigerians as well as report from her family in October of same year of threat of death by the insurgents should the government not meet their demand.
To this end, civil society group, human rights activists, media and international community continued to stand in solidarity with Leah and others detained by the insurgents and call on government to ensure her release.
“As a civil society organisation (CSO) we do not support the payment of ransom which enrich the terrorist but suggests that alternative measures be deployed to secure her release”, he said.

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