Police halt street protest by #BringBackOurGirls campaigners

Policemen on Thursday cut short the street protest by members of the
#BringBackOurGirls movement as they walked along the Shehu Shagari Way,
Abuja, distributing fliers to motorists and passers-by to remind them
of the plight of the 219 Chibok girls that are still in Boko Haram
captivity.

The policemen numbering about 20 barricaded the road with their
vehicles at the junction to the Presidential Villa, a move that enraged
the activists who shouted in anger.

The BBOG members raised questions about the billions of naira raised
for the victims of terrorism in the country through the Victim Support
Fund, noting that the money was not being used to ameliorate the
sufferings of Internally Displaced Persons and other victims of the
insurgency.

The coalition members, who took off from their regular meeting
point, the Unity Fountain, Maitama, after a short session, initially
walked to the National Assembly gate where they flayed the lawmakers for
proceeding on Christmas holidays while the abducted girls languished in
the forest.

A Co-coordinator of the group, Oby Ezekwesili, said the lawmakers
should be “ashamed of themselves for going on break while the Chibok
girls are with wicked men in the bush.”

A police patrol team which had been following the group from the
Unity Fountain, quickly radioed for support and about three other
vehicles quickly drove to the shut NASS gate.

A dark man in white native, apparently a senior security officer,
was observed speaking to his boss on his hand held radio, and reporting
the situation. He was overheard saying “the protest is being led by a
former education minister.”

After spending a few minutes, the BBOG members left and as they
walked towards the Presidential Villa junction, policemen in four
vehicles quickly drove to the junction and blocked it, to prevent the
protesters from heading that way.

This infuriated the #BBOG members who railed against the operatives,
but they were not deterred as they massed at the junction and shared
out fliers to motorists.

A member, Bukky Shonibare, who just returned from delivering relief
materials to Internally Displaced Persons in Yola, Adamawa State, noted
that 98 per cent of the IDPs are not living in camps but with private
families.

She explained that the displaced persons were suffering, adding that
most of them lacked food, shelter and clothing and other basic needs.

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