Two years ago, the world was rocked by the news that the fearsome group Boko Haram broke into a school and kidnapped 279 girls at Chibok, Borno State, Nigeria. What started for a lot of us as business as usual “Na wa for these Boko Haram people, they have started again o!” quickly broiled over into an international maelstrom of sadness, grief and defiance, leading to the globally recognised hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.
Shortly after the kidnap of these young girls, 57 managed to escape, putting paid to rumours swirling at the time that the story was just a hoax to show President Jonathan’s government in a bad light, but that seems to have been the extent of the rescue efforts despite many protests, rallies and cries of frustration.
In the two years since #BringBackOurGirls has trended, some of the parents have died from grief, many have given up hope of ever seeing their daughters alive again, and the world has moved on. Not because we are unfeeling and unsympathetic, but because the daily onslaught of grief that pours out as a result of man’s intolerance and hatred to man is too much to bear. We cannot live in a perpetual state of heartbreak, and as one horrific tale mounts on top of the other, we just learn to deal and move on. We are the traumatised, living zombies of war.
We. Just. Move. On.
Today, there are rallies all over Nigeria to remind us not to forget. To remind us that there are still mothers who cry nightly as they cannot sleep. That there are fathers who look up in hope every time they see a young girl walking towards the house. To remind us that it should not be said that this callous, wicked thing should not have happened on our watch.
And I, the queen of verbosity, am speechless. I don’t know who to appeal to or what to even say. I don’t know how we are looking for 200+ girls like we’re looking for 200 needles. I don’t know how to tell these parents “We lost your baby.”
It is my fervent wish that Nigeria gets the healing that the poor masses need.
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