International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that one of the Chibok schoolgirls who was kidnapped in 2014 has escaped and is in safe keeping with the Nigerian government. The Nigerian military announced the rescue of the girl in the Sambisa Forest area in Borno State.
Confirming the release to ICC, the chairman of the Chibok Parents Forum, Yakubu Nkeki, said with a tone of excitement, "It is true! Her name is Salome Pogu, from Kuburmbula Ward, Kaumitihyahi village." Yakubu further explained, "Just the day before, her father, Pogu Yahi, came to visit me and asked what further steps were being taken to secure the release of the remaining girls, only for us to hear the good news of the rescue of his daughter today."
Yakubu also disclosed that the previously released girls who had been in the custody of the Nigerian government in Abuja were brought to spend Christmas with their families in Chibok. He said, "We distributed them to their parents in the various villages. It was indeed a joyful time of reunion and celebration." The girls would soon return to Abuja to resume their education.
In 2014, Boko Haram, the radical Islamic sect, kidnapped more than 270 primarily Christian girls from their school in Chibok. Twenty-four of the girls were released in 2016, while another 82 were released in June 2017 in exchange for Boko Haram commanders held by Nigerian authorities. At the time of writing, there are still over 100 young women still in captivity.
ICC's Regional Manager, Nathan Johnson, stated, "This is a joyous occasion for the family, the community, and the global Church. The release of this young girl gives others hope that the rest might still be released or rescued. We pray for the safety of those who are still being held in captivity, and give thanks for the return of Salome to her family."
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Publication date: January 5, 2018