It’s been 16 days weeks since they were taken at gunpoint. Sixteen WHOLE DAYS. I’ve waited this long to make any remarks about the abduction of the 200+ girls in Chibok, Nigeria, snatched from their dorms as they prepared to take their final exams because I was truly hoping for a different result. With the exception of the military’s blatant lie concerning the rescue of all the students (who in their right mind would do that?), everything has turned out as I privately predicted.
The world has been largely silent.
The Nigerian government has proven itself hapless and hopeless in the face of insurgency.
The girls have been sold off into forced marriages and slavery.
I understand what we’re dealing with here; I really do. We have known for centuries that the Black woman – African women in particular – sit on the bottom of society’s totem pole. Throw a hijab on her and she may as well not exist. What is an African Muslim woman? The stereotypes are set like concrete: She’s uneducated, fit for childbirth and a life of drudgery, the property of her father and eventually her husband. This obviously explains the Nigerian government’s lackadaisical response to this crisis – and make no mistake, it is a crisis now and setting the foundation for several others to come in the near future. Bet on another 12 – 14 years.
I don’t think Africa’s governments as a whole have any clue what we are dealing with. If they did, they would be clamoring to offer military assistance, aid, intelligence and any other support they can muster to bring these girls back, because mark my words – this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Why would a group of men kidnap girls between the ages of 16-18? They are vulnerable, impressionable, and more importantly they are of childbearing age. This crop of insurgents didn’t pack all these girls into a caravan to ferry them to a magical land of joy and plenty. These girls will be raped (if they haven’t been already), the most defiant of them will be made an example of in front of the others, and the children they bear will be used to feed the next wave of Islamic Militant Insurgency and then West Africa is going to have a real pile of crap on its hands.
Unless ECOWAS does something to act NOW.
There should have BEEN aerial surveillance going on in the region from day one. The military should have BEEN mounted up and chased them into the forest to recapture the girls. And there should have BEEN immediate calls for neighboring countries to lend their assistance. But again, we are dealing with impoverished Muslim girls, so authorities thought it would be cute to proclaim that they had ‘rescued’ 40 girls (they escaped), fudge the numbers of the number kidnapped, and hope that we would all go back to watching Berenice on YouTube or Big Brother Africa.
These people are not serious.
As anyone who has dealt with children and criminals will tell you, there is one allowance you can never afford these two groups of people: they must never be made to feel as if they can get away with anything.
We’ve seen it in Ghana. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s there was a spate of robberies and murders, particularly surrounding the stealing of cell phones. Since technology is ever developing and evolving, would-be thieves backed off cell phone theft as models would be considered obsolete within the year. But what they learned from that experience is that Ghana’s police structures are weak and its task forces are ill-equipped and under motivated. It emboldened hardened criminals; and now we find ourselves in a juncture in history never seen before. Government officials are being attacked robbed and/or murdered in their own homes. 30 years ago this was unthinkable!
The fact that Goodluck Jonathan and his crew have done so little to curb insurgency in the North has not gone unnoticed.
“Ahhhh…so long as they keep their foolishness in the North, we are okay, eh?”
And then they bombed the very cosmopolitan city of Abuja and killed 88 people. This act of terrorism is but a taste of what Boko Haram is willing to do and WILL continue to do if African forces do not band together and quell this. They are a disease, and like any other sickness it will affect everything that it touches. Ghana, Togo, Ivory Coast and Cameroon should never imagine themselves fully sheltered from such a movement. There is a storm brewing. The time for meetings and strategies has long come and gone. It is high time for drastic measures.
All hands must be on board to rescue these girls. One group in particular must be engaged, and that is the Islamic religious leadership. They MUST speak up against this insurgency and others like it. The international media MUST give these voices a stage. These acts of wickedness and barbarism must be condemned by those that profess to share the same “faith”. When insurgents yell “Allah Akbar!”, they must do it with the shameful knowledge that imams all over the world condemn their acts. Western education may be forbidden, but there is no god but the devil that would ever tolerate these rape, murder, terrorization and evil.
I urge every reader to do their part to pressure governments all over the world – in your corner – to quell this unholy revolt and #BringOurGirlsBack . You think they will stop at just 200? Think again.