82 Chibok Girls Were Swapped With Boko Haram Prisoners – Presidency
SAN FRANCISCO, May 07, (THEWILL) – The Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu has disclosed that the release of 82 Chibok girls was done in exchange of Boko Haram suspects.
This was as the Borno Elders Forum, BEF, on Sunday, described the reported release of the 82 Chibok girls by Boko Haram insurgents as a good omen.
In a statement issued on Saturday, Shehu explained that negotiations with the Boko Haram sect resulted in the freedom of the girls.
He noted that the talks were carried out in collaboration with security agencies, the military, the Switzerland government, Red Cross, local and international non-governmental organisations.
The presidential spokesman stated that Buhari received daily briefings throughout the negotiation process.
His statement reads, “President Muhammadu Buhari is pleased to announce that negotiations to release more of the #ChibokGirls have yielded results. Today, 82 more #ChibokGirls were released.
“After lengthy negotiations, our security agencies have taken back these girls, in exchange for some Boko Haram suspects held by the authorities.
“The released #ChibokGirls are due to arrive in Abuja tomorrow Sunday May 7, and will be received by the President.
“President Muhammadu Buhari expresses his deep gratitude to all who played a part in ensuring the success of this operation, as follows: Security agencies, the military, the Government of Switzerland, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and local and international NGOs.
“The President has repeatedly expressed his total commitment towards ensuring the safe return of the #ChibokGirls, and all other Boko Haram captives.
“The President has received detailed briefings from the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS) at every stage of the negotiations/operation.”
On their part, the Borno Elders Forum stated through the Secretary of the forum, Dr Mali Gubio, that credit must go to President Muhammad Buhari.
“We are extremely happy to hear the news on the release of the girls; we are grateful to God for showing us this day.
“We believe that Buhari deserve great commendation on this.
“The President has done so much and he is doing well in piloting the affairs of the nation.
“We pray to Almighty Allah to grant him good health, so that he can continue the good work he is doing.
“For the girls we are very happy, we hope they are not traumatised in anyway.
“We believe that it is time the abductors release all the people in their custody; I think they have no reason to keep holding them for no just cause.
“These are helpless vulnerable people who are supposed to be in their villages and hamlets waiting for the rainy season to return to farm.
“It has taken so long, I think that they should have a change of heart to make sure that they end the insurgency.
“There is no reason for us to continue to destroy ourselves, what they are doing is an act of self destruction, destroying themselves and the society at large.”
BEF continued that the insurgents had succeeded in showing their grievances to the world, adding that, “it is now time for the insurgency to end even without the military force.
“The insurgents have expressed their grouses or whatever problem they have with the society,” Gubio said.