Posted by News Express | 3 May 2014 | 4,668 times
The Nigerian military has yet to record a breakthrough in the search for the abducted female students of Government Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State, and needs a special committee dominated by civilians to make a headway. The indication came late yesterday by way of the establishment, after a seven-hour special security meeting, of a Presidential Committee on the rescue of the abducted students.
There was no visible sign of any serious attempt to get the girls back home until spreading protests across the country forced President Goodluck Jonathan to summon the special security meeting yesterday – more than two weeks after the over 200 teenage girls were taken away at night from their hostel on April 14 by Boko Haram terrorists.
The 26-man Presidential Committee announced via a statement in Abuja signed by Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, has Lagos lawyer Femi Falana and 25 others as members, with retired Brig. General Ibrahim A. Sabo as Chairman. Falana’s appointment is not surprising as he has squeezed out time from his busy schedule as a member of the National Conference to join angry Nigerian women in street protests aimed to force government to take concrete action towards the rescue of the abducted girls.
Anyim said as follows in the statement:
As part of efforts to ensure successful rescue of the abducted female students of Government Secondary School Chibok, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR, has approved the constitution of a Presidential Committee on the rescue efforts for the missing female students. The Committees whose work shall be largely fact findings is charged with the following terms of reference:
(a) To liaise with the Borno State Government and establish the circumstances leading to the School remaining open for boarding students when other schools were closed;
(b) To liaise with relevant authorities and the parents of the missing girls to establish the actual number and identities of the girls abducted;
(c) To interface with the Security Services and Borno State Government to ascertain how many of the missing girls have returned;
(d) To mobilise the surrounding communities and the general public on citizen support for a rescue strategy and operation;
(e) To articulate a framework for a multi-stakeholder action for the rescue of the missing girls;
(f) To advise Government on any matter incidental to the terms of reference.
2. The Committee is composed as follows:
(i) Brig. General Ibrahim A. Sabo (Rtd.) – Chairman
(ii) Barrister Femi Falana, SAN – Member
(iii) Hajia Hawa Ibrahim – Member
(iv) Hajia Fatima Kwaku – Member
(v) 2 representatives of National Council of Women Societies (NCWS) – Member
(vi) 2 representatives of the All Nigeria Conference of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPSS) one whom shall be a female – Member
(vii) 2 representatives of the National Parents Teachers Association – Member
(viii) 2 representatives of the Nigeria Police – Member
(ix) 2 representatives of the State Security Service – Member
(x) 2 representatives of the Nigerian Army – Member
(xi) 2 representatives of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) – Member
(xii)1 Representative of the Federal Ministry of Information (who shall be the Committee’s
Spokesperson) – Member
(xiii) 1 Representative of the Federal Ministry of Justice – Member
(xiv) 3 Representatives of Borno State Government (two of whom, preferably, shall be women) –Member
(xv)1 Representative of the United Nations – Member
(xvi)1 Representative of ECOWAS (who shall be a woman) – Member
(xvii) Permanent Secretary (Special Services Office) OSGF – Secretary
4. The Committee will be inaugurated at the State House, Abuja on Tuesday, 6th May, 2014 by 12 noon.
•Photo courtesy Nigerian Tribune.
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