Former Education Minister and now leader of the Bring Back Our Girls, BBOG, group, Oby Ezekwesili, has responded to a group led by President Muhammadu Buhari’s daughter, advising it against the use of the BBOG name for fund raising.
The Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative, AFRISEI, led by Hadiza Buhari-Bello, had earlier rejected allegations of franchise infringement by the Bring Back Our Girls, BBOG, group.
“The Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative has its own defined objectives and that it didn’t need to steal anybody’s ideas to operate in line with its own objectives,” the group said in a statement Friday.
It followed BBOG’s criticism of the use of the group’s inscription at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on the Chibok Girls Endowment Project, which took place on Monday in Abuja.
The BBOG demanded an immediate retraction and unreserved apology from the organisers of the event, and urged the public to disregard attempts at linking the group to the event.
However, Mrs. Buhari-Bello said contrary to the allegation, AFRISEI did not need to lean on the BBOG to be of service to the Chibok Girls.
While praising the activities of the BBOG to raise and sustain awareness about the plight of the kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls, the president’s daughter said her organisation had broader objectives beyond the Chibok girls.
“Given the size of the problem at hand, the more organisations we have assisting Chibok and other devastated communities, the better for the country,” her group said.
She said, as a charitable organisation, AFRISEI is committed to empowering the youth and the less privileged in the area of job creation and skill acquisition.
“It is also committed to supporting the education of the less privileged students, giving material support to the downtrodden; the internally displaced persons.
“AFRISEI is committed to educating the masses to discourage unhealthy practices such as child trafficking, child abuse, child labour and gender discrimination.”
But Mrs. Ezekwesili responded on Twitter Friday, insisting the BBOG should not be mired in request for donations.
“What’s hard to understand? From the outset in 2014, @BBOG_Nigeria DECIDED that the Movement shall NEVER be mired in DONATIONS. Simple,” she tweeted.
“WE, @BBOG_Nigeria DON’T RAISE FUNDS. If your organization is RAISING FUNDS, don’t call it “BBOG STAKEHOLDERS”. ETHICS matter, not so?
“A people that keep blurring the lines between Good and Bad,” she wrote.