News / Africa

Nigeria President to Meet Parents of Chibok Girls Next Week

FILE - Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan speaks to the media on the situation in Chibok.
FILE - Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan speaks to the media on the situation in Chibok.
Peter Clottey

Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan plans to meet parents of the abducted Chibok girls as well as elders of the Chibok community in Abuja.

That’s according to Doyin Okupe, the president’s Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs, who said the meetings will take place next week after the leader sent them an official invitation.

Jonathan pledged to meet the parents of the abducted school girls following a recent meeting with Pakistani rights activist Malala Yousafzai, but a proposed meeting didn’t happen.

Okupe blamed leaders of the “Bring Back Our Girls” campaign for the failure of that meeting to take place.

“The president has now formally invited them to meet with him on Tuesday and we are expecting that meeting to hold,” said Okupe. “The indication from the parents and their leaders in Abuja was that… they have received the letter and they will honor the invitation.”

There were local media reports suggesting that the parents were concerned that a television broadcast of a meeting with the president could make them vulnerable to attacks by the Islamist militant group, Boko Haram.

Okupe dismissed those reports. He said leaders of the “Bring Back Our Girls” campaign are sabotaging government’s efforts in an attempt to create political discomfort for President Jonathan ahead of next year’s presidential vote.

“From time immemorial we have always known that they had major political reasons and they were heavily sponsored and had very serious partnership with APC [opposition All Progressives Congress]. And that everything they are doing is to embarrass the government and is pointedly aimed at 2015,” said Okupe. “They were the people who insisted even despite Malala’s efforts these people refused and did not allow the meeting to take place.”

Opponents of the president have often criticized the administration of being too slow to react following the abduction of the girls by Boko Haram militants.

They also point out that the president has yet to visit the Chibok area or meet the parents and elders of the community since the girls were abducted over 85 days ago.

Okupe said the criticisms are politically motivated, insisting that Boko Haram militants are engaged in terrorism and cross border crimes that requires international cooperation to defeat the phenomenon. 

“[Jonathan] is the president of Nigeria, he will visit Chibok, he will visit anywhere else,” said Okupe. “Since [the] Chibok event over 2,000 people have also been killed by Boko Haram and Abuja was recently bombed. The president has to have all that in view. So it’s not only Chibok …and we still have the problem of Boko Haram to contend with. It’s a very deep and multifaceted problem.”

Okupe says President Jonathan has been busy with heads of various security agencies and international security experts formulating strategies to address the security challenges the country faces.

Clottey Interview With Dr. Doyin Okupe, adviser to President Jonathan
Clottey Interview With Dr. Doyin Okupe, adviser to President Jonathani
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

 

You May Like

Russian Help on Iran Less Promising on Syria, Ukraine

US-Russian collaboration to secure a deal on Iran's nuclear program has raised hopes of closer cooperation on other world issues More

Video US: Millions Exploited by Vast Fortunes of Human Trafficking

State Department's annual report calls exploitation 'modern slavery,' brutalizing girls, women into prostitution and forcing men, women and children into low-wage jobs across the globe More

US-Ethiopia Relationship Strong, But Complicated

While Ethiopia serves as a valuable security ally and a bulwark against terrorism - the U.S., is a major aid donor and economic stimulator More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Bello Bichi from: Colorado Springs co 80918
July 21, 2014 4:41 PM
Mr. President, I think it is of no use what so ever for the parents of the abducted girls to meet with you in Abuja now. This abduction took place last three month and you couldn’t go to Chibok to sympathize with the parents, the people and government of Borno State but instead you want the parents to come and meet with you in Abuja, I think this is wrong, you are the one to go to Chibok even if the Boko Haran is going to abduct you. Your physical presence in Chibok will at least prove to the Nigerians that you really care and have concern for what happened even if your government could not rescue these girls. You should know that “good relationship depend upon feet and maintenance of good relationship between people requires frequent visit.” If you (Goodluck) could not go to Chibok I don’t see why the parents should meet with you in Abuja. “If Abuja could not go to Chibok why should Chibok go to Abuja.”

by: chizorum
July 18, 2014 7:14 AM
i know that Goodluck Jonathan is tryin to bring back those girls and assuming its a real thing about this girls, i am 100% sure that our president would have bring back those girls, if not be the case then its bunch of lies from the other party so that they can use it against him for the next election.

by: Nwaonyenze from: Lagos
July 17, 2014 3:00 AM
I like Mr President, he is very intelligent n cautious.
Let me say this categorically, There was never any real kidnapping of any girl at Chibok. It was an APC arrangement.
Shame on the devils.
God bless n protect Mr Jonathan.

by: Marvine B. Tchitche from: West Chester, PA
July 16, 2014 11:32 PM
We need more pressure from the Nigeria president to bring back our girls.
In Response

by: ifeaoluwa
July 18, 2014 7:08 AM
am still staying it and i will continue to say this word "there nothing is like chibok girls" and i belive that it a big frame of lies from the ACN

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backersi
X
Michael Bowman
July 26, 2015 8:44 PM
Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backers

Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Underground Streetcar Station In Washington, DC, to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Obama Encourages Kenya to Fix Cultures of Corruption, Discrimination

President Barack Obama bid farewell to Kenya Sunday with a major speech at as stadium outside the capital Nairobi where he called on Kenyans to change the cultures of corruption and discrimination that can hold society back. VOA East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video California Towns Welcome Special Olympics Athletes

Cities and towns in Southern California are greeting thousands of athletes who are arriving for Special Olympics, a competition for people with intellectual disabilities. The games will run from July 25th through August 2nd. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, where athletes from Namibia, Singapore and Tanzania got a rousing welcome from local residents.
Video

Video Critics of Japan Defense Policy Focus on Okinawa

In Okinawa, many locals have long complained that Tokyo places an unfair burden on the tiny island by locating most of Japan's U.S. military bases there. As Japan's government moves toward strengthening and expanding the country's defense policies, opponents of those plans are joining local protesters in Okinawa, voicing concern about where the country is headed. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Okinawa.
Video

Video IS Uses Chemical Weapons in Syrian Attack

Islamic State militants have added a new weapon in their arsenal of fear: chemical weapons. VOA Kurdish service reporter Zana Omer was on the scene within hours of a recent attack in Hasakah, Syria, and has details of the subsequent investigation, in this report narrated by Miguel Amaya.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.
Video

Video Hoverbike Flying Toward Reality

Another long-standing dream of many technological inventors is quickly approaching reality: U.S.- and British-based firms are cooperating in the development of an individual flying platform they call a hoverbike. They say it may revolutionize the concept of flying, including in the U.S. military. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video As Japan Expands Defense Role, Protests Follow

The Japanese government is moving forward with a controversial security bill that would authorize the military to fight abroad for the first time since World War II. Leaders say it is critical to defend against rising threats from China and North Korea. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Japan on the big changes ahead, and the opposition they are drawing.
Video

Video Rise in HIV Infections Worries Ugandan Officials

Uganda had the third-highest number of new HIV infections in sub-Saharan Africa last year, reversing its reputation for successfully tackling the epidemic in the 1990s. Although the percentage of people living with HIV/AIDS is still half of what it was in the 1980s, the increase in new infections is worrying to health workers. VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
Video

Video Replacing Poppies with Coffee in Myanmar

The remote mountains of Myanmar’s Shan state are home to the second-largest opium-producing region in the world. After a drop during the 2000s, production surged in the past eight years to feed an increasing demand for heroin in China. But farmers are now making less on the crop, and the U.N. is hoping many will make the switch to growing coffee. Daniel de Carteret reports for VOA from Taunggyi.

VOA Blogs