BY CHIDI NKWOPARA
OWERRI — Ladies of Saint Mulumba, Owerri Metropolitan Province, have joined their counterparts in other parts of the country to protest the abduction and continued detention of the over 200 female students kidnapped from their school at Chibok, Borno State, by Islamic terrorists, Boko Haram.
The lady knights, numbering over 500, marched from the Holy Ghost College, Owerri, through Assumpta Avenue to the Maria Assumpta Cathedral where they lodged their grievances with the Catholic Archbishop of Owerri Ecclesiastical Province, Most Rev. Dr. Anthony J. V. Obinna.
The ladies, drawn from the six dioceses of the Ecclesiastical Province, namely Owerri, Umuahia, Orlu, Okigwe, Ahiara and Aba diocese, prayed the Blessed Virgin Mary to intercede for the kidnapped girls and the country.
They displayed placards depicting their grievances as they marched, prayed and sang along the roads under the watchful eyes of security operatives.
Some of the placards read: “Mothers are traumatised,” “Release our girls unconditionally,” “The girls are future leaders,” “Enough is enough,” “Bring back our girls” and “Respect sanctity of life.”
Speaking before handing over their petition to the Archbishop, the LSM Metro President, Lady Chinedu Brown, called on God to scatter Boko Haram, expose their sponsors in Nigeria and overseas and let them not sleep until they surrendered the innocent girls.
Some of the issues raised by the protesting women were: “Where were the security operatives when the convoy of vehicles stormed the girls’ college”? Where were the army and police when the Boko Haram convoy left the college with over 300 young girls”?
Responding, Archbishop Obinna said the Church was also worried about the development and was praying to God to touch the hearts of those who also claimed to be religious, even as he reasoned that “by their fruits, we shall know them.”
He described the abduction as a serious act against children, noting one could imagine the trauma the girls and relations were passing through now.
He reminded governors that they were the chief security officers of their various states and should ensure that the people and property in their states were safe and secure.