Mansur Dan Ali, minister of defence, says it may take years to find the remaining kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls. Speaking with the Hausa service of VOA, the minister said the army had continued its search of the girls in the vast Sambisa forest.
“It took the US up to seven, eight, up to 10 years before they could get to Bin Laden. We are continuing our campaigning in the Sambisa forest in all its nooks and corners,” he said.
Also speaking to VOA, Nuru Khalid, a Sheikh and member of the influential Inter-faith group, said the country could not afford to allow the Boko Haram insurgents win the war.
“We can never allow the terrorists to win the war. If they got [away] free with those girls, then they have relatively won the war,” Khalid said.
Human rights lawyer Abdu Bulama Bukar told VOA that the government needs to address the psychological trauma suffered by the families of the missing girls and other victims of Boko Haram brutality.
“Married women have been made single again; kids have been orphaned; homeowners are without shelter; Nigerians have been turned into refugees in their own homeland,” he said.
On April 14, 2014, 276 girls were abducted from Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok in Borno state. While 57 of the girls managed to escape, three were found, and 21 released after the sect struck a deal with the government.
A total of 195 are still missing. The Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) movement has been advocating for the release of the girls.