Four of the 223 abducted Chibok schoolgirls have escaped from their abductors’ camp and returned home, an official of Borno State Government said yesterday.
The official, who pleaded anonymity, disclosed that the state Commissioner for Education, Musa Inuwa Kubo, told the Presidential Fact-finding Committee on Chibok attack, during an interaction with them in Maiduguri last week, that the escape of the four girls was a cheering news to the parents and the government which also prayed that the rest of the girls would be released unharmed.
The official said Kubo informed the committee that “the four girls were discovered after Governor Kashim Shettima directed the Ministry of Education to open data pages for families of all the girls” which should include names and pictures of the girls, class, age and the pictures of parents.
“It was during the data capturing and visits to parents that it was discovered that four girls, who were among those declared missing had reunited with their parents but the parents failed to inform the school authorities,” the official, who was privy to the testimony of the commissioner before the committee, stated.
He said the commissioner told the committee he was furious with the parents “for keeping the government in the dark” about the escape of their daughters from the Boko Haram camp.
“The four girls are believed to be among those that escaped to the bush and lost direction during the attack and abduction. The commissioner told the committee that with the discovery of the four girls, a total of 219 girls were still missing. He informed the committee that after the April 14, 2014 attack on the school, the state government had made series of announcements calling on parents whose daughters might have come home following the attack to bring them back so the government could take record to ascertain the number of missing girls.
“Many parents brought back their kids while others who escaped from captivity were also reunited with the school. A total of 276 girls were initially said to have been attacked based on reports by the Borno State Police Commissioner and the state Director of Security Service (DSS).”