FG hires 300 clerics to pray everyday for return of 110 abducted schoolgirls-Official
By our reporter with agency report
The Federal Government has hired no fewer than 300 Muslim clerics have been to continue to pray for the safe return of 110 schoolgirls abducted by suspected Boko Haram fighters in the northeastern state of Yobe on February. 19, according to a local official on Friday.
The special prayers are being held on a daily basis, and this will continue until all the abducted schoolgirls return safely, Goni Bukar, a national lawmaker representing Dapchi and neighboring communities said in the Nigerian parliament.
“We have gathered all the Ulamas (Muslim clerics) in Dapchi into one mosque and gave them every support to start praying to God until all the girls return,” Bukar told reporters.
The national lawmaker said intelligence among the locals had revealed that the abducted schoolgirls are being kept somewhere within Yobe.
Bashir Manzo, head of the Forum of Parents of the Missing Girls, also confirmed the development, saying the forum also contributed financially to the prayers.
One of the largest Muslim organization in Nigeria Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) on Thursday urged the government to be at its best in rescuing the missing girls.
In a statement, the group said abduction of the girls was aimed at frustrating the girl-child education in Nigeria.
“No parent now is comfortable, especially in the North-East, to allow his daughter to go to such callously unprotected schools; and the North is the loser,” the group said, blaming the lapses on the government and lack of synergy between the local security operatives.
The Nigerian military has deployed air assets, including intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platforms, in search of the missing schoolgirls.
So far, the Nigerian air troops had already flown more than 200 hours while conducting the search for the girls, the military said.
The country’s air force chief Sadique Abubakar, the police chief and heads of other paramilitary agencies had also relocated to Yobe to superintend the search for the girls.
The tragedy of the missing girls has brought back memories of a similar occurrence four years ago in Africa’s most populous country when more than 200 schoolgirls, also from an all-girl college, were abducted by Boko Haram in the northeastern town of Chibok.
Only 107 of the Chibok girls have been rescued or returned amid ongoing government negotiation with Boko Haram.
The United Nations believes Boko Haram has killed more than 20,000 innocent people since 2009 through terror attacks.