Boko Haram: Sorrow, tears as BBOG members visit Red Cross office
It was tears and sorrow on Tuesday when members of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) Group, rallied to the office of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in mourning over the killing of the committee’s member, Saifura Khorsa.
Ms Khorsa, a midwife with the ICRC, was killed by Nigeria’s deadly terror group, Boko Haram, on Monday. This was six months after she was kidnapped, alongside two others.
Ms Khorsa, after much plea not to be killed in a video shown to BBOG, was shot at a close range.
The murder of the 25-year-old midwife came barely a month after Boko Haram released photos and audio recording of Ms Khorsa and two other female aid workers begging the Nigerian government to quickly come to their rescue as their time of being safe in custody of the insurgents was running out.
The other two still in Boko Haram custody are Hauwa Liman and Alice Loksha.
President Muhammadu Buhari and other international organisations have condemned the act, describing it as heinous.
BBOG, in a protest led by its co-convener Oby Ezekwesili, said the visit was to encourage the association to demand the release of the other abducted women.
“We were quite destabilized by the video that came out showing that Saifura was killed and (the) threat that (was) accompanied in the video.
“We are here (in) ICRC to make a demand on them that as an institution that works on issues of humanity, they must do everything necessary to demand the rescue of their staff from the Nigerian government.
“This three humanitarian workers are national staff of international organisation and the global community must take the matter of their safety seriously.
“We cannot have a situation where those who support the vulnerable members of our society that are victims of the terrorism of war would now be exposed to risk.”
The BBOG called on government and the international community to ensure the release of the other two captives and another abducted school girl, Leah Sharibu.
Ms Sharibu was kidnapped along with over a hundred other students in Dapchi, a village in Yobe State in February. Five of the students died, while the others were released following an agreement between the terror group and the federal government.
She was however left behind for allegedly failing to renounce her faith. According to the video, Ms Sharibu also risks losing her life in the hands of the terrorists.
“We are insisting that Hauwa and Alice must be saved, that is what they deserve and their life must be important to us.
That our government would do everything possible to make those two women return. To make sure Leah Sharibu and the 112 Chibok girls return and also make sure that every victim of this savagery be safe because that is the role of the government, to dignify the human life.
“We would be taking a march to the state house tomorrow as so as our next step.”
The ICRC said it had taken steps to ensure the successful return of its abducted staff. The communication’s adviser, ICRC, Aleksandra Mosimann, explained this to the BBOG members.
“Since the abduction of our colleagues, ICRC has not spared any effort to bring them back, to have a positive outcome at the end of the day, so they can come back to their families and friends.
“Today as we grief for the loss of Safura, I would like to appeal to those that are holding and can decide the faith of Alice and Hauwa to let them return to their families. We are hoping to have them return very soon,” she said.
Earlier at the UNICEF office, the group was not allowed access into the building which triggered a melodrama between them and the officials of UNICEF.
The country representative, Mohammed Mallick, later apologised to the group.
Mr Mallick gave the assurance that UNICEF would do the needful to ensure the safe return of the abducted victims.