Dakar – Members of some 20 civil society organisations in Senegal marched in Dakar on Saturday to demand the release of the girls abducted on April 14 by the Islamic sect, Boko Haram, in northern Nigeria.
The protesters, dressed in red, numbering over 100, shouted: “Release our sisters! Release our daughters!’’ hurled hostile slogans against Boko Haram, while many others carried banners on which were written “Bring Back Our Girls.’’
A young Senegalese student, Seynabou Thiam, said she did not wish to be in the situation of the abducted girls “because it is very difficult to get separated from our parents.’’
She expressed the hope that the mobilisation would reap its fruits with the help of God.
Another student, Mouhamadou Bocoum, said that he was shocked by the abductions. “War is not prosecuted by abducting children.
“I do not understand how we can convert Christians to Moslems by force, as announced by the leader of the sect, Abubakar Shekau,’’ Bocoum stressed.
According to him, members of Boko Haram are criminals because abduction is a crime.
“They say they do it in the name of religion but Islam has never recommended abduction of children and to convert them by force’’, he added.
Soukeyna Ndao, a member of the Association of Senegalese Jurists, regretted the weak mobilisation of African governments against the massive abduction of girl-students.
“I would have liked to see all African states protesting against this situation, unfortunately, the voices are not heard’’, she grieved.
She pledged that the Senegalese civil society organisations would keep the pressure on to call government’s attention to the incident with a view to making efforts at bringing back the girls safe and sound. (PANA/NAN)