By Sadiq Umar
Nobel laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, Tuesday challenged the Nigeria’s President-elect, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, to rescue the schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram from Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, Borno state, by Boko Haram exactly a year ago.
Soyinka, who spoke at the event marking one-year commemoration of the abduction of the girls, said humanity must rise against terrorism in every part of the world, saying it is a global problem.
“We are calling on the incoming government to reinforce efforts to bring those children back, so we do not gather here in another anniversary – abysmal anniversary,” he said.
“I’m encouraging all of us, that this is not a Nigerian problem alone, no. I am urging all of you to turn yourselves into observatories – this thing would not go away soon. Please understand that it’s like an amorphous problem Push it here, it goes there,” the Nobel laureate added.
According to him, “We must become policemen and women, police girls and boys. Whether you’re handicapped, whether you’re in a wheel chair, I want you all to stand – be vigilantes of your community, be volunteers. We must ensure we do not come back here to celebrate a dismal event.”
Also at the event organised by Women Arise for Change Initiative, Professor Pat Utomi, urged the incoming government to come up with a clear strategy for the quick rescuing of the girls.
“It is important to recognise that nothing gets done without a clear strategy; there should be a team that quickly takes on some of these as early quick wins.
“I think it should not be rocket science gathering intelligence about where things are. They are not as we expect them because a year has passed but I think intelligence can be gathered to help salvage what is possible under the circumstance.”
The convener of the initiative, Joey Odumakin said the government must double its efforts to ensure the release of the girls.
The right activist said Abubakar Shekau, leader of the Boko Haram, has murdered sleep a year ago when the abducted the girls and should be made to face the consequence of his action.
“I want the outgoing government to realise that the few days that we have left, Nigerians remain hopeful that the greatest parting gift that can be given to our dear citizens is for our girls to be reunited with us,” she said.
She also called on Buhari to brace up for the challenge of governance ahead of swearing in.
“I want the incoming government to realise that the time for celebration is gone. We must hit the ground now. Our priority and what we want to hear loud and clear is ‘rescue our girls now.”