The sound of school girls playing outside may be trivial to some, others maybe in different but to parents in Chibok, Nigeria it is a sound that they long for. Ever since2014 when the terrorist organization Boko Haram ruthlessly kidnapped over two hundred girls, all these parents have longed for is to know that their children are safe. Fifty seven managed to escape, twenty one more have been reunited with their families last week, but for the rest it is feared that the promise –made by Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau- that they have been married off has likely been fulfilled.
At the break of the attacks the world came together in solidarity to demand for the release of the girls using the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. People from all corners of the globe including Nobel Peace Prize Winner Malala and the First Lady of the United States participated in the campaign, demanding that the Nigerian government step up efforts to retrieve the girls. Two years later, have these calls been answered? According to Amnesty International at least 2000 girls have been abducted by Boko Haram between the start of 2014 and today. The figures speak for themselves. It is easy to blame the government and their lack of proactive action against the terrorists but this is not what the mother who is waiting for her daughter to come home needs to here. For her, the search for her child is not something that stopped being the centre of her world since that fateful day in April last year. She needs to believe for the sake of her missing daughter(s) that hope is still alive and that they will be reunited one day.
This is where the rest of the world comes in; we need to stay committed to the plight of the mother in Northern Nigeria. The #BringBackOurGirls campaign was one of the most successful of 2014; we need to make sure that it stays that way every single year until these girls are released. The President elect of Nigeria Mohammed Buhari released a statement saying that “…to every parent, family member and friend of the children my government will do everything in its power to bring them [the girls] home.” This has been well received by the country and the content as all we want is to see the girls safe and reunited with their families.