Dapchi students during yesterday’s headcount

Two groups on Friday urged Federal Government to constitute special security outfit that would focus mainly on protection of school girls in insurgency-ravaged parts of the country.

The groups, Women Arise for Change Initiative (WA) and Centre for Children’s Health Education, Orientation and Protection (CEE-HOPE), gave the advice in separate interviews with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Lagos.

The groups’ recommendation followed statement by the Yobe Police command that 111 girls of
Government Girls Secondary School, Dapchi, were unaccounted for following an attack by insurgents on the school on Monday evening.

It would be recalled that in 2014, Boko Haram insurgents abducted 276 girls from their school in Chibok, Borno State, and some of the girls were still being held captive.

Dr Joe Okei-Odumakin, the President of WA, told NAN that there was need for proper and adequate protection for women and girls in the country.

According to her, women and girls in the country should be given special protection
because of the rate at which they are being molested on daily basis.

She said “even the most vulnerable ones living in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps were not exempted from terrible experiences.

“It is therefore an issue of urgent importance that should be squarely addressed; there has to be a way to protect women and girls.

“Government should set up special security network that will mainly focus on protection of every school attended by girls in insurgency ravaged parts of the country.”

Okei-Odumakin said attacks were clearly not just on schools but targeted at the future of
young girls, their education and the future of the country.

She said it was sad that at a time that the nation still await the release of the remaining Chibok school girls abducted since 2014, such a terrible situation could once again be experienced.

The WA president further recommended punitive measures on perpetrators of attacks and all forms of violence against women and girls.

In the same vein, Mrs Betty Abah, the Executive Director of CEE-HOPE, said children, both boys and girls, deserved to be adequately protected.

She said “government must ensure the protection of girls.

“It is sad indeed that we are witnessing a replay of the Chibok girls abduction saga.

“It is sad and indeed very depressing that girls have become endangered as they attempt to acquire education to improve their lives and their family members.”