May 16, 2014

Jonathan cancels visit to Chibok

Jonathan cancels visit to Chibok

People demonstrate to press for the release of missing Chibok school girls in Lagos on May 12, 2014. Boko Haram released a new video on Monday claiming to show the missing Nigerian schoolgirls, alleging they had converted to Islam and would not be released until all militant prisoners were freed. AFP

The much awaited official visit by President Goodluck Jonathan to Chibok Local Government Area of Borno state slated for today (Friday) has be pastponed indefinitely.

Sources said, the pasponment of the visit became necessary due to some important engagement.

President Goodluck Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan

Chibok, is in south and about 140 kilometres drive from Maiduguri, the state capital. It would be recalled that some gunmen suspected to be Boko Haram terrorists invaded Chibok on April 14th this year and abducted over 250 schoolgirls writing their final year S.S.C.E examinations, out of which 54 escaped, a situation that has attracted global outrage with some world leading countries offered help to Nigeria on how best to safely rescue the girls.

Our Correspondent gathered that as soon as 6 o’clock in the morning, the major streets and roads within Maiduguri metropolis, particularly the road from the airport to Government House were heavily manned by security operatives, especially policemen to ensure successful welcoming/ hosting of the president, but when the news of the cancelled visit filtered into the town, most of the fierce looking policemen deployed on the streets withdrew back to their stations.

Governor Kashim Shettima who had to flew from his trip abroad in a chattered flight and landed at the Maiduguri International Airport at about 9am, declined to comment on the President’s proposed visit as he drove directly to the Government House with some government officials including the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Ambassador Baba Ahmed Jidda.

Although, reason for pastponment of the visit is still sketchy, sources said, “it is not unconnected with Jonathan’s planned visit to France for security meeting slated for today (Friday)”.

A prominent leader from Chibok who pleaded anonymity told our Correspondent on phone confirmed the cancellation of the visit. He said ” Yes we received an information from the state government that Mr. President is no longer visiting Chibok, until further notice, already we have informed our people including the parents of the abducted schoolgirls who had earlier gathered waiting for Mr. President to disperse and go back to their respective houses, as I am talking to you now I am also on my way back to Maiduguri”. He stated.