FLASHBACK: On this Day in 2014, Boko Haram Abducted 276 Chibok Girls

It is exactly 10 years today, since Boko Haram terrorists raided the Government Girls Secondary School Chibok in Borno State, and abducted nearly 300 young female students, aged between 16 and 18, who gathered eagerly to sit for their exams.

On April 14-15, 2014, wielding deadly weapons, the terror group members forcefully abducted a total of 276 girls students, threw them into their vehicles, and drove them away to their enclaves and dens.

The girls had gathered for exams at the school when the militants arrived, pretending to be government security officials who had come to protect them.

The brazen abduction of the students sparked global outrage and concern. Nations and international bodies like the United Nations and the European Union pledged their support to Nigeria in the efforts to rescue the abducted students and hold the perpetrators accountable for their heinous crimes.

’37 Parents of Abducted Chibok Girls Have Died’

Approximately, 57 students managed to escape from their captors, while others were rescued by government forces with the assistance of organizations like the Red Cross.

About 90 of them are still missing. Fifty-seven escaped as they were being carted off to the group’s base in the vast, ungoverned Sambisa Forest 60km (40 miles) southeast of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

From 2016 to 2017, 108 were rescued by the Nigerian military or freed through prisoner swaps while about 20 more returned in the past two years.

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Tragically, some of the abducted students were later forcibly married off to their captors, denying them the chance to return to their studies.

Reports also indicated that some of the girls were seen with the children they bore during their captivity, with painful marks of the atrocities they endured.

Like many others who have escaped harrowing conditions in Boko Haram hideouts, the girls-turned-women now face a different type of challenge: the struggle to restart their lives when so much has changed. However, the fate of several others remains unknown, leaving families gripped by anguish and uncertainty.

The abduction of these students from Chibok has not only left scars on the victims and their families but has also set a disturbing precedent.

Similar incidents have occurred in other schools across the northern region of Nigeria, with bandits exploiting the situation to demand ransom payments.

Ten years after the tragic event, sympathizers in Chibok, Abuja and Lagos have today gathered to honour the memory of the abducted students and to demand justice for those who have suffered at the hands of their captors.

Since their abduction in 2014, Nigeria has been led by Presidents Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari, and currently, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for many citizens, little has changed.

Massive kidnappings of students, especially girls, have continued unabated, halting the chances of education for thousands of children in the Northern region, with unending pledges to end the menace by the authorities.


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