Amina Ali Nkeki, the Chibok schoolgirl who was rescued Wednesday after two years in Boko Haram’s captivity, will be offered the best opportunity to complete her education, the Federal Government has assured.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who met with the rescued girl on Thursday evening at the presidential villa in Abuja, said Federal Government would shoulder the responsibility of Amina’s education to any level she wishes to attain.
The President said Amina will receive the best medical, psychological and emotional care that the Nigerian Government can afford, Mr. Buhari said.
He said since nothing could be done to salvage the past, the rest of her life will take a completely different course.
“The continuation of Amina’s education, so abruptly disrupted, will definitely be a priority of the Federal Government. Amina must be enabled to go back to school. No girl in Nigeria should be put through the brutality of forced marriage. Every girl has the right to an education and a life choic.”
“Although we cannot do anything to reverse the horrors of her past, the Federal Government can and will do everything possible to ensure that the rest of her life takes a completely different course. Amina will receive the best care that the Nigerian government can afford.
“We will ensure that she gets the best medical, psychological, emotional and whatever other care she requires to make a full recovery and be reintegrated fully into society” the President said adding that he can only imagine all the girl who was taken away at 17 years had to go through at such an early stage of her life,” he said.
Buhari stated that the Federal Government will assist the Murtala Muhammed Foundation, which has already been providing support to families of the missing Chibok girls and which runs a trauma and counselling centre in Kano.
They will also be involved in ongoing work with Amina, monitoring her progress and highlighting any additional support she requires, he said.
He assured that his administration would continue to do all it can to rescue the remaining Chibok girls who are still in Boko Haram captivity.
“Amina’s rescue gives us new hope, and offers a unique opportunity for vital information” he said.
Amina was escorted by her brother, mother, the the National Security Adviser, Mohammed Monguno, and the Borno state Governor, Kashim Shettima
The mother, who spoke at the brief ceremony in the president’s office, said Amina is one of the two surviving children of the family. Her father died from the trauma of losing his daughter.
Amina is presently undergoing medical checkup from personnel from the government and nongovernmental organisations.
Trauma experts from UNICEF have also met with her.
Gov. Shettima commended the President for his patience, persistence and doggedness in ensuring the restoration of peace in the north east.
He said one year ago nobody could venture out of Maiduguri beyond 15 kilometres, as it was on the verge of falling into the hands of Boko Haram.
He said no local government area in Borno or in Yobe or Adamawa is under the control of the insurgent group at present.
The Minister of Defence, Dan Ali revealed the rescue of the girl was further made possible due to intense military bombardment of the Sambisa forest which he said lasted for 22 days.. He stated that about 150 persons held captive in the forest had been freed. The minister however stated that the military recorded 69 casualties in the operations.
“What we are celebrating today is your political commitment and support which has given major boost to the success of the fight against terrorism.
“The change of military leadership at the inception of this administration injected new ideas and vigour into our military administration. Consequently Sir, the armed forces of Nigeria achieved tremendous success by ensuring that the safety of lives and properties and protection of territorial integrity of our country.
“This operation crack down is offensive operation within operation Lafia Dole which started on the 28th of April. It was aimed at clearing Sambisa forest, the haven of Boko Haram terrorists. In that operation, we have been able to clear a lot of villages, a lot 20 villages have been cleared in the last 22 days of this operation. We have also rescued over 150 in this operation since it started among which we separated our Chibok girl, Amina Ali.
“The officers and men of the Armed Forces have actually been involved in this operation. In this 22 days we have lost about 7 soldiers, 3 due to enemy action and IEDs, one accidental during clearing of IEDs, and 3 as a result of road traffic accidents. We have also had some troops injured and they are responding to treatment. We have counted close to about 69 killed in action and we have also captured equipment and also boomed some of their own platform”, he said.