The girl who claimed to be one of the missing Chibok girls after she was arrested in Cameroon on March 25 is not one of the missing girls after all.
Three representatives of the Chibok parents, after examining photographs of the girl, confirmed in Abuja on Wednesday that “the girl and the woman do not fit the description of any of the missing daughters from Chibok.”
The 12 year old girl whose name has now been given as Maryam Alhaji Wakeel was arrested with another woman by local vigilante youths in Limani, Cameroon, carrying explosives, apparently on a suicide mission. Both were handed over to the multinational military task force operating in the area.
The girl was said to have told his interrogators that she is one of the 219 girls kidnapped by Boko Haram insurgents at the Government GirlsSchool, Chibok in April 2014.
However, according to a statement issued by Aisha Oyebode, Chief Executive Officer, CEO, of the Murtala Muhammed Foundation, three representatives of the parents of the missing Chibok girls examined the photographs of the said girl on Wednesday at the organisation’s Abuja office and concluded that she certainly is not one of the missing girls.
The federal government had engaged the Murtala Muhammed Foundation to handle the process of ascertaining who exactly the girl is.
Oyebode gave the names of the Chibok representatives, whose children are among the missing girls, as Yakubu Nkeki, Lawan Zana and Yana Galang.
She said that photographs of the girl and the woman arrested with her had been sent to the foundation’s offices by the Special Assiatant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu and the Nigerian Ambassador to Cameroon, Hadiza Mustafa.
“Nkeki, Mallam Zana and Mrs.Galang have confirmed that the girl and the woman do not fit the description of any of the missing daughters from Chibok,” Oyebose said in the statement.
She observed that before the Wednesday identification process, the Nigerian government had announced that the girl was originally from Maiduguri but had been kidnapped by Boko Haram gunmen in Bama about a year ago.
The woman arrested with her was also identified as Aishatu Usman, a 35-year-old mother of two children.
“We have also made arrangements for other stakeholders to view the photos at the MMF office in Abuja as we are yet to ascertain how the girl came to describe herself as one of the missing Chibok girls,” Oyebode stated.
She also disclosed that Maryam and Aishatu have been handed over to Nigerian military authorities by the Cameroonian government and that they are both on their way to the country.