By A.S.M Jimoh
It is two months now since Boko Haram members abducted over 200 innocent girls. Only God knows the trauma the parents of those girls go through daily since then. It has even been reported that some parents of the girls have died from the shock of the abduction. What has added to the pains on parents and Nigerian in general, except the few in government, is the lethargy of the government in doing the needful to see the return of the girls to the parents still alive. Whatever the current pretense of doing something about it may be, the reality is that the government does not care since none of those little girls is a child to any of those in government.
We knew how the media arm of our police force was re-energized when the mother of the current minister of Finance, Mrs. Okonjo Iweala, was kidnapped. Also, all avenues of negotiation were deployed when the foster father of President Jonathan was abducted early this year. The prompt payment of heavy ransoms saw to the release of them both, even though they continue to deny that any ransom was paid. Again, the release of the son of Edwin Clark, President Jonathan godfather, could not have been so smooth without the intervention of government. Agreed to their denials that no ransom was paid, why would government not use the same bargaining power in all the afore mentioned cases to negotiate to #BringBackOurGirls. The government’s claim that it cannot negotiate with terrorist is just an excuse to evade responsibility because the kidnappers they have been negotiating with are also terrorists as they, too, like Boko Haram, use act of fear to achieve an aim.
The fact remains that the government of the day still think that no girl was missing or the abduction is an opposition staged-managed one. What a country! This is evident from the speeches and body languages of government officials and aides. The initial pretense by the government after 3 weeks of non-mention was due to the World Economic Forum hosted in Abuja. The WEF is gone and the government has relapsed back to its belief of a staged-managed abduction. The question I will be asking both those that matters and the inconsequential in this piece, starting with Mr. President, is that will they be living the way they live today if their children were among the #ChibokGirls.
Dear President Jonathan, would you be dancing about on political rallies if your child were among the #ChibokGirls? Would you not have caused heads to roll in various departments of government? Would the presidency still be a beehive of activities? If at all it is, it would be due to the visit of those coming to share the grief of the abduction with you. Would you not have negotiated much swiftly than you did for the release of your foster father?
Dear invisible Vice President Namadi Sambo, if your daughter were among the #Chibokgirls, would the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting not be postponed indefinitely until the #ChibokGirls are found? Remember when your brother died, a whole a FEC meeting where supposedly the nation problem is discussed was cancelled.
Dear Anyim Pius, if your child were among the #ChibokGirls, would you be able to sleep during a security meeting even if you wanted to. Would you still be that fat the day you intercepted #BringBackOurGirls march to Aso Rock and labeled them an opposition sponsored? Madam First Lady, would you have caused the arrest of any woman if your child were among the #ChibokGirls. There is God o. Those women are mothers like you o. Would you not have been shedding real tears on National TV daily, instead of that crocodile one, if one of your two children is among the #ChibokGirls? Dear Grandma Sarah Jibril, would you have dressed like an under-18 and stopped #BringBackOurGirls march to Aso Rock if your grandchild is one of the #ChibokGirl let alone your own child. Would you not have tried to make everyone recall the byword ‘the pain of childbirth’?
Dear Senate President David Mark, would you have led a delegation to party in Brazil if your daughter is among the #ChibokGirls? Would your famous red cap not have become oversized if your child were among the Chibok girls? Dear Okonjo Iweala, would your gele (headgear) still be so stylish if your child were one of the girls? Would you be tired of talking of the girls as you said recently, because I know you did not get tired of talking about your mother when she was kidnapped?
Dear Air Marshal Alex Sabundu Badeh, would you be telling us that you knew where the girls were and then went to sleep when the responsibility of the body you head is to bring out our girls wherever they are kept? Would your tummy still be of that size and have a space for beer if your child has been in Boko Haram enclave for two months? Mr. LabaranMaku, the loquacious minister of information, would the length of your cap not have shortened if your child were among the Chibok girls? Would you be telling the barefaced lie you tell that the government is on top of the situation? Would you not have said the #BringBackOurGirlsfamily are 100% PDP members and that the woman leading them, Madam Oby Ezekwesili, was an Amazon, the legendary female warrior in Greek mythology?
General Chris Olukolade, if your child were among the Chibok girls in the den of Boko Haram for two solid months, would you still be telling us that the army is strategic in its approach in spite of the glaring failure? The attack dog of Jonathan, Doyin Okupe, would you need to go and see a doctor to shed fat if your child were one of the girls from Chibok? Nay, the trauma of thinking of what those evil people do with you girls would have been the natural therapy to make you less obese. Would you not have thought of piloting those non-existing fighter jets you claimed are scanning the Sambisa forest?
It is sad that we have a society who only cares for the high and mighty. However, we should take cognizance that a society who cares not for its poor, but rather oppresses them, is heading to an abyss. Alternatively, as Late John F. Kennedy puts it, if a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. My hearts goes out to the girls and their parents.
A.S.M Jimoh is reachable on firstname.lastname@example.org.