The Federal Government through the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, has disclosed why President Muhammadu Buhari was very careful on the release of the abducted Chibok schoolgirls.
Femi Adesina, said the negotiators engaged by the Goodluck Jonathan administration, made the negotiations a commercial venture running into millions of Naira, only for the government to discover it had been swindled.
“We need to know a little bit of what happened behind the scenes, between the last government and some people masquerading as the leadership of Boko Haram who wanted to get the Chibok girls released. They actually turned it into a franchise, it became a commercial thing and they got money, possibly in millions of dollars, only for government to discover it had been swindled”.
They kept saying they could get the girls released, they could interface with Boko Haram and they went smiling to the bank with all that money, and nothing happened. So you should understand why this government is being careful and the President has said the genuineness of the leadership of Boko Haram must be determined before any negotiation takes place”.
Femi Adesina also defended Buhari on his stance over the bail granted former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd) and IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu, saying Buhari was right in saying that, if there are no fresh charges against the men, they would be free to go.
On the night of 14–15 April 2014, 276 female students were kidnapped from the Government Secondary School in the town of Chibok in Borno State, Nigeria. Responsibility for the kidnappings was claimed by Boko Haram, an Islamic Jihadist and terrorist organization based in northeast Nigeria.
On 17 October 2014, hopes were raised that the 219 remaining girls [clarification needed] might soon be released after the Nigerian army announced a truce between Boko Haram and government forces. The announcement coincided with the six-month anniversary of the girls’ capture and followed a month of negotiations mediated in Saudi Arabia by Chadian president, Idriss Déby.
The announcement was met with doubt as this was not the first time the Nigerian government had claimed a breakthrough in negotiations with the Islamic militant group – it had to backtrack on a previous announcement in September after saying the girls had been released and were being held in military barracks.
The Islamist group Boko Haram wants to institute an Islamic caliphate in Nigeria and is in particular opposed to western-style modern education, which they say lures people away from following Islamic teaching as a way of life.[Thousands of people have been killed in attacks perpetrated by the group, and the Nigerian federal government declared a state of emergency in May 2013 in Borno State in its fight against the insurgency.The resulting crackdown has led to the capture or killing of hundreds of Boko Haram members, with the remainder retreating to mountainous areas from which they have increasingly targeted civilians.However, the campaign has failed to stabilise the country. A French military operation in Mali also pushed Boko Haram and AQIM terrorists into Nigeria.
Since 2010, Boko Haram has targeted schools, killing hundreds of students. A spokesperson for the group said such attacks would continue as long as the Nigerian government continued to interfere with traditional Islamic education. 10,000 children have been unable to attend school as a result of activities by Boko Haram. Boko Haram has also been known to kidnap girls, whom it believes should not be educated, and use them as cooks or sex slaves.
Boko Haram’s attacks have intensified in 2014. In February, the group killed more than 100 Christian men in the villages of Doron Baga and Izghe.Also in February, 59 boys were killed in the Federal Government College attack in northeastern Nigeria. In March, the group attacked the Giwa military barracks, freeing captured militants.The abduction occurred on the same day as a bombing attack in Abuja in which at least 88 people died.Boko Haram has been blamed for nearly 4,000 deaths in 2014.Training received from al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has helped Boko Haram intensify its attacks.