A group of women, under the umbrella of Africa Arise for Change Network, has petitioned the United State President, Donald Trump over continued attack on women by terrorists. The group however demanded protection from terrorists in Africa.
The group said threats to women in Africa has made it imperative that America reasserts its global leadership status by protecting the vulnerable.
Recall that Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), a faction of Boko Haram, had recently executed Hauwa Leman, an aide worker with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Borno State.
The terrorists also vowed to keep Leah Sharibu, one of the Dapchi schoolgirls, who is currently in their custody, as “a slave for life.”
Irked by the ugly incidents, the women, in a letter addressed to Trump through the US Ambassador to Nigeria, called on the United State Government to urgently intervene “before it is too late.”
The letter, signed by Gbemisola Osadua, the Executive Director of the group, decried that most of the women and girls abducted by Boko Haram in the northern areas of Nigeria experienced sexual violence including rape, torture and murder.
She further urged America to stand in and ensure the protection of the rights of women and children from further abuse by Boko Haram terrorists.
“This letter is a passionate appeal for the kind intervention of the United States of America to the plight of women and children in the hands of members of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP-Boko Haram).
“Nigerian women and children have been at the receiving end of the brunt of the activities of Boko Haram terrorists as a result of increasing feminisation of terror vide the use of young girls and children in their nefarious activities.
“Most of these women and girls abducted by Boko Haram in the northern areas of Nigeria experienced sexual violence including rape, torture and also murder. A recent study suggests that more than 45% of those killed by the Boko Haram are women and children.
“Boko Haram abducts women and children during raids on towns and villages in North-East Nigeria and detained them in Boko Haram’s camps. A typical example is the abduction of 276 female students of Government Secondary School, Chibok, Bornu State from their hostel on 14th April 2014 into the Sambisa forest. Similarly, on February 19, 2018, one hundred and ten (110) schoolgirls aged 11–19 years old were kidnapped by the Boko Haram terrorist group from the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College (GGSTC), Dapchi, area of Yobe State, in the northeast part of Nigeria.
“The activities of Boko Haram have dramatically changed the lives of thousands of women and children, often casting them by force into new and ignoble roles outside the domestic sphere. Gender-specific suffering has recorded high figures. While men have disproportionally been killed, women are an overwhelming majority among the estimated 1.8 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the North East.
“Dear President of the United States, the list is inexhaustible hence this appeal for your kind intervention in saving women and children from the threat of Boko Haram in Nigeria and by extension in Africa.
“It is, therefore, our considered opinion that there is an urgent need for the United States of America to reassert its global leadership status by intervening in the war against terrorism in Nigeria and Africa. This is important because armed conflicts such as the Boko Haram conflict do have a devastating and harsh impact on women and girls. Women and girls suffer violations such as rape, forced prostitution, sexual slavery, forced impregnation and in some cases deaths as evident in the cases of Hauwa Liman and Saifura Khorsa, two aid workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross, that were summarily executed by the Boko Haram terrorist group in North East Nigeria.
“The contributions of the United States of America toward combatting terrorism in the world cannot be overemphasized given the fact that between October 2015 and October 2017, the US fought terror in 76 countries in the world.
“Dear President of the United States, the terrorist threat in Nigeria is felt more in the lives of women and children, whose rights have been continually violated with impunity. It is there of great importance for the Rights of women and children to be protected because Women Rights as Human Rights have been at the heart of a series of international conferences that have produced significant political commitments.
“It, therefore, behooves on the United States of America in its capacity as the global leader in the fight against terrorism and the perseverance of human rights to rise to the occasion in this regard in Nigeria and Africa.
We, therefore, make this passionate appeal to the government of the United States of America to stand in and ensure the protection of the rights of women and children from further abuse by Boko Haram terrorists,” part of the letter read.