Leaders of Chibok community, under the aegis of Kibaku Area Development Association, have faulted a negotiator, Zannah Mustapha, for saying that some abducted schoolgirls refused to be part of a group of 82 girls freed at the weekend.
The Chairman, Chibok Community in Abuja, Hosea Tsambido, told reporters in Abuja, on Tuesday, that the attitude of the Federal Government was not only suspicious but was at variance with how the government handled the rescue of the 21 schoolgirls in October last year.
Tsambido said the community would never accept such a claim because the government could use it as an excuse to give up on the rescue of the other girls.
He added, “The most disheartening and annoying thing is the statement credited to one of the negotiators who said some of the girls refused to come out. We don’t want to hear that, even if the girls don’t want to come out, it is not for him to advertise.
“The girls must come out, whether they like it or not; they should force them out, just as they were forced in, they should be forced out. As their mind was changed by Boko Haram, when they return to us, we will change their mind back.”
Tsambido said some politicians from Borno State were allowed to see the girls, who are currently in the custody of the Department of State Services, lamenting that Chibok leaders, resident in Abuja, were denied access to the girls.
He added, “We have still not been contacted; parents have still not been contacted. All I was told is that some people from Chibok, two district heads and the former and present chairmen of the local government area, came to Abuja and were allowed access to the girls. Some community leaders from Abuja, who went with them, were barred from entering.’’
The leader explained that he had matched the names of the freed girls with the list he had with him.
“I started comparing the list with the one that I have and I have seen a good number of the names that matched the list I have, so I believe that they are the Chibok girls,” Tsambido stated.
In a statement by Oby Ezekwesili and Aisha Yesufu, the co-conveners of the Bring Back Our Girls group, the BBOG said it had begun the verification of the identities of the rescued girls.
It said some of the parents had already developed health problems like hypertension, arguing that the continued suspense could worsen their conditions.
The statement read in part, “Our movement has begun the elementary process of verification and authentication of the identities of our released 82 Chibok girls based on the list in the public domain (this list alone does not suffice for our process). We shall communicate our full report to the public soon.
“We urge the Federal Government to use the verification, authentication, and reunification system in confirming the identities of our returned girls.
“We also urge the Federal Government to quickly liaise with parents of our Chibok girls and the Kibaku Area Development Association i.e. the Chibok community as was done in the four previous times our girls returned.”