Musdapha Ilo, Maiduguri
After about three weeks of silence, the proscribed Boko Haram sect has claimed responsibility for the abduction of over 200 girls from the Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok in Borno State.
The girls, all secondary school finalists sitting for the on-going West African Examination Council, WAEC, test were kidnapped at about 11:00 pm on April 14, 2014 to an unknown destination by members of the group disguised in military uniforms and since then there had been no news about who the abductors were or the motive behind the action.
But in a new video released Monday, the sect’s wanted leader Sheikh Abubakar Shekau, claimed responsibility for the kidnap and custody of the missing girls, insisting they were spoils of war and no more than slaves with whom he can do whatever he wants.
The terrorist leader, in the 57-minute video recording, said he may decide to sell them as articles in the market or give them out in marriage, stressing that the choice was his to make.
Shekau who did not display the girls throughout the recording, said in Hausa and Arabic languages that their offence was their decision to acquire formal education which his group forbids.
“Western education is sin, it is forbidden, women must go and marry,’ Shekau said.
The sect leader, however, did not provide answer to the puzzle of how many girls were really kidnapped, neither did he give any condition for their release.
Boko Haram’s claim of responsibility for the girl’s abduction has come at a time when questions were being raised about the incident.
Women leader of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP Kema Chikwe, last week raised eyebrows about the mysterious abduction of the girls, insisting that the Borno State government provide names and photographs of the missing students.
Only today, reports indicate that the Nigerian First Lady, Patience Jonathan, at an overnight meeting with some stakeholders expressed doubts about the abduction saga.
Jonathan was alleged to have told the group of women that there was no kidnap and accused those fighting for the release of the girls of belonging to the Boko Haram sect.