30 Jun 2017

Photo of the day: President Trump and the Chibok Girls!

 by Jonathan Ekene Ifeanyi
 
President Donald J. Trump, his daughter Ivanka Trump, and Chibok schoolgirls, Joy Bishara and Lydia Pogu among others at the U.S White House.

The above photo—US President Donald Trump meeting with two freed Chibok girls at the White House on Tuesday—is simply the “photo of the day.” The photograph is dated June 27 and was posted to the official White House website and Twitter page on Wednesday, showing Mr. Trump, along with his daughter, Ivanka, posing with two Chibok girls identified as Joy Bishara and Lydia Pogu.

Ms. Bishara and Ms. Pogu were among the 276 young women and schoolgirls who were abducted by Boko Haram terrorists from the Government Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State in 2014. Bishara and Pogu leaped from Boko Haram’s truck on the night of the kidnapping, according to a profile by People magazine. They were among a few who managed to escape on the night of the kidnapping. In the years since, more than 100 of the hostages have been released in negotiations or escaped. The rest remain in captivity, many forced to “marry” to the group’s fighters. The kidnapping prompted international outrage and the hashtag #bringbackourgirls, which former US First Lady Michelle Obama helped popularize.
                                                                                                                                                      
In an image released on the White House Facebook page as “photo of the day” on June 28, Trump and his daughter Ivanka pose with the young women in the Oval Office. The White House seems to have released no other statement on the visit yet.

With the help of the Jubilee campaign, Bishara and Pogu were brought to the US in August of 2014 to attend a “Christian” boarding school in the Oregon countryside, according to People. The “Christian” non-profit has characterized the Boko Haram insurgency as a targeted attack on Christians. Pogu’s and Bishara’s fate has been very different from that of their classmates in Nigeria, as they recently graduated from Canyonville “Christian” Academy in Virginia and will attend Southeastern University—another so-called “Christian school” located in Florida, founded in 1935 by the (terribly Protestant) “Assemblies of God” Alabama District Superintendent J.C. Thames and other Southeastern district leaders—at the start of the next academic session.

Even among those who escaped captivity, many suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and stigma in their communities because of their experiences. 

Today, even as I write, Boko Haram is still killing Christians almost on daily basis, some of which are no longer being reported by some newspapers especially since the new APC government took over power in 2015.



                               Shekau and his gang who abducted the girls
       
Since this month of June, for instance, I simply can't count the number of people that have been killed by the group. For instance--the one still fresh in my memory--eleven people were killed early in the month when the terrorist gunmen and suicide bombers launched a rare combined attack inside the strategic northeast Nigerian city of Maiduguri. See a video of it in the article, Boko Haram kills 11 in Maiduguri.

Again, see:  At least 12 dead in Nigeria in attack with Boko Haram characteristicsAnd so on!  
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