Federal Government yesterday said it was set to negotiate with Boko Haram sect to secure the release of over 200 female students of the Government Secondary School, Chibok in Borna State, which the group abducted on April 14, 2014.
National Coordinator of the National Information Centre on Security Update in Nigeria, Mr. Mike Omeri, dropped the hint at a press conference in Abuja, yesterday.
President Goodluck Jonathan had in his national broadcast on May 29 to mark the 2014 edition of Democracy Day, said that his administration would only dialogue with the terrorist group if its members renounced violence and lay down their arms.
But yesterday, Omeri said that the Federal Government is exploring all options, including negotiation, provided it is in line with international best practices.
The new move of the Federal Government, Nigerian Pilot learnt, was informed by the recent United States swap of five dangerous Taliban terrorists for an American soldier.
It was further learnt that the Jonathan administration was shocked that some foreign powers, including those opposed to their negotiating with Boko Haram, were already negotiating with armed groups in the interest of their nationals.
Omeri, who doubles as the Director-General of the National Orientation Agency, NOA, also revealed that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Bishop Justin Welby, is already in the country in respect to efforts towards rescuing the missing girls.
“Nigeria is totally committed and focused towards ensuring that our beloved daughters are returned safely and in good health. Therefore, we are assuring citizens that all options will be explored in so far as it is in line with international best practices. We wish to assure Nigerians that efforts are ongoing to rescue the girls and it would not be in the interest of operations to disclose every detail, but be assured that citizens will be briefed appropriately as developments unfold in this regard,” Omeri stated.
Omeri also said that the Federal Government’s efforts at reaching out to affected communities in the North-East were yielding results.
“Following the successful delivery of relief materials by the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, the agency has visited Chibok, Gamboru, parts of Yobe State and has also visited Kano and Jos with relief materials and is currently mobilising for appeal to spirited individuals and corporate organisations who wish to donate relief materials to get in contact with 080022556362, 08032003555.”
An Australian cleric, Dr. Stephen Davis, who is a close friend of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Bishop Justin Welby and other well-meaning Nigerians are in the mediation efforts to free the abducted.
Source: Nigerian Pilot


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