The Senate has summoned the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris and the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, to explain the circumstances surrounding the abduction of 110 students of Government Girls Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, by Boko Haram on February 19.
The invitation followed the adoption of a motion moved by Senator Binta Masi Garba, to commemorate the 2018 International Women’s Day.
The motion had Senators Stella Oduah, Oluremi Tinubu, Biodun Olujimi, Monsurat Sumonu, Fatima Raji-Rasaki, Rose Oko, John Enoh and Yele Omogunwa as co-sponsors.
Unanimously granting prayers of the motion, the lawmakers resolved to “felicitate with Nigerian women and girls on this year’s International Women’s Day Celebration.”
They also mandated the Senate Joint Committees on Police Affairs; and Security and Intelligence “to summon the Inspector-General of Police and the Chief of Army Staff to brief the Senate on the actual situation of things regarding the kidnap and, in addition, present clear operational strategies to rescue the remaining Chibok and Dapchi schoolgirls within two weeks.”
Boko Haram had earlier on April 14, 2014, abducted over 200 pupils of the Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State, while more than half of them had either escaped or secured their release through negotiations.
Olujimi, who presented the motion on Garba’s behalf, said the Senate was concerned that the implementation of policies that prohibit violence against women and girls, and promote the girl-child’s education was still poor.
“Practices such as violence against women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking, sexual and other types of exploitation, early child and forced marriage, female genital mutilation are still being practised,” she said:
Olujimi added, “The Senate is further concerned that the spate of girl-child kidnapping in Nigeria has assumed an alarming dimension. On the 21st of February, 2018, the nation was shocked with the news of the kidnap of 110 schoolgirls from Government Girls Science Technical College, Dapchi, Busari Local Government Area of Yobe State. This incidence is reminiscence of the 2014 Chibok girls’ abduction in which 113 of the girls are still in captivity almost four years after.
“The Senate is worried that a pattern is gradually being established which clearly indicates that the objectives of the Boko Haram insurgents is to deprive young girls of school age from pursuing education.
“The Senate is further worried that if this ugly trend is not checked, the girl-child education, which is part of the objective of goal Number 4 of the Sustainable Development Goals would have been lost in Nigeria, even before the 2030 target year.”
Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary, called for proper implementation of the affirmative action by Nigeria.