By Judyannet Muchiri, Editor NAYD.
100 days today 276 girls were forcefully taken from their school in Nigeria. What followed is an uproar from people across the globe both on the ground and online in which has come to be famously known by #BringBackOurGirls. People went online with placards sending bold messages to Boko Haram to set the girls free. That was weeks ago. Today this uproar seems to have died down. People have seemingly moved on to the next thing.
This right here is the problem.
We can’t possibly know what these innocent girls have gone through these last 100 days, what they have been forced to do, what they have been subjected to and what goes through their minds with each daybreak and each sunset. Do they look out longingly to the horizons expecting help or do they look down with a heavy heart and the acceptance of what their lives have become. Do they keep the hope that the people out there are working tirelessly to bring them home or do they keep counting the reasons why they had to be taken.
Why did these young girls, who carry with them the vigour of youth and the promise of tomorrow, have to be kidnapped. All reasons political and otherwise held into consideration the main reason why they were taken is because they went to school. It is unfortunate that in this age the world still finds a threat in a girl who is educated. 276 girls in school translates into a self sustaining community in future with not only empowered women but women who can actively take part in development processes without waiting on others. These women are what Africa needs to move it from a ‘developing continent’ to a self sustaining continent. A girl with an education has the world in her hands and the best thing is that what she does with that world is her decision to make. She gets to choose the kind of life that she will lead.
The question therefore begs, would such a world be too bad a world to live in? The answer lies in the cowardly actions of people, like Boko Haram, who continue to thwart the efforts and the rights of girls to get an education. While girls all over the world continue to face such challenges, most of which go unreported and thus unknown, the Chibok Girls stand out. They stand out not only because they represent the struggle of the girl child but also because of how the world will handle their kidnapping and what this in turn will mean to all girls in Nigeria and in the whole world.
Each day, we are at 100 today, that passes without these girls coming home represents how the world has failed to give the girl child the priority she deserves. The world I speak of here is first and foremost the Nigerian Government, the AU, the International Community and you. It will set a precedent and whether intentional or not this is sending a message to all the other young girls in the world:
“You can be kidnapped for going to school and the world will forget and move on”
This is a call to change this message. It is a call for everybody, including you, to stop and realize it has been one hundred days since innocent girls were robbed off their innocence in the dark of the night. It is a call for you to get angry and therefore to act. It is a call to put more pressure on the government that is responsible for ensuring the security of all its citizens. It is a call to stand and send the daughters of the world a different message.
A positive message by bringing back the daughters who must be looking out to the horizon hoping.