A group of Nigerians have staged a protest on the premises of the Nigerian High Commission in the United Kingdom with a call on the British government to put pressure on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to secure the release of Leah Sharibu.
During the protest, a petition with 12, 132 signatures was lodged by Rebecca Sharibu, as a member of the UK Parliament, Baroness Caroline Cox, called on the Nigerian government to take action to secure her daughter’s freedom.
The protesters, led by the Executive Director of International Organisations for Peace and Social Justice, Pastor Ayo Adedoyin, displayed placards with inscriptions, ‘Two years in captivity, negotiate her release now’, ‘Held because of her faith, Free Leah’, and ‘Still here, still waiting for action.’
Leah Sharibu was one of the 110 female students of Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, who had been held in captivity since February 19, 2018 by Boko Haram terrorists on account of her Christian faith.
The spokesperson for the Sharibu family and senior lecturer in the Department of Political Science at the University of Jos, Dr Gloria Puldu, shared the details of the protest, including videos and photographs with The PUNCH on Wednesday night.
According to her, the protest was to commemorate the two years of the abduction of Leah Sharibu by Boko Haram insurgents.
The don, who is the Executive Director of Leah Foundation, said Rebecca Sharibu pleaded with the UK authorities to “put pressure on President Buhari, who was visiting their country to fulfil the promise he made to bring back home Leah and all others in captivity.”
She said, “February 19 marks two years of the abduction of Dapchi girls and Leah Sharibu the only remaining girl in captivity turns two years in captivity. Rebecca Sharibu is presently with me in the United Kingdom to appeal to the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, to put pressure on President Muhammadu Buhari, who is on a private visit to the UK to fulfil the various promises that he has made to secure Leah’s release on several occasions.
“Rebecca met with Baroness Caroline Cox on February 18 who assured her that she would take her message to UK Parliament. Cox explained that she had been on the Nigerian case for quite some time.
“The signatures gathered by the CSW U.K. was delivered by Rebecca Sharibu and accompanied by myself, CSW Chief Executive, Mervyn Thomas and Pastor Adedoyin with other protesters in attendance.”