A report by a Trump campaign official giving credit to Trump for bringing escaped Chibok girls to America, has been debunked as fake news.
“This is flatly and blatantly false”, said Emmanuel Ogebe, a human rights lawyer based in the U.S.
A Nigerian newspaper said the claim was made during a campaign outreach to voters of African descent tagged “Africans for Trump 2020.” No date was given of the purported zoom event.
The article read in part, that a Trump official “assured that Trump is passionate about development in Africa, (while he) listed a plethora of President Trump’s accomplishments on the continent of Africa.”
“Further, “Brewer said Trump, saddened by the Chibok situation in Nigeria, reached out and ensured that the girls who were lucky to escape captivity, were brought to the United States, where his daughter, Ivanka hosted the girls at the White House as they were cleared for college education on scholarships.”
Ogebe said the report was completely false.
“The Chibok girls referenced above were only two out of 12 schoolgirls that I brought to the US.
“They landed at Washington Dulles airport where I received them on September 1, 2014 courtesy of flights paid by a Nigerian pastor.
“Trump was neither president nor even running to be president at the time. He was in no shape or form involved in their coming to America and any claim to the contrary is a blatant falsehood.
“Furthermore even the man who took them to the White House to see Trump and Ivanka did not bring them to the US. The girls were handed to him by the Nigerian Embassy in 2016 two years after they arrived in America.
“Although a Republican operative, the man Doug Wead was not even in the Trump camp but was working for Senator Rand Paul’s presidential campaign which contact he used to try and obtain the girls from my custody to justify the money he had been raising in their names. Again there was no Trump connection to the girls even in 2016 when he was running.
“The Trump claim of sponsorship seems to continue the trend of White appropriation that the Chibok girls issue has faced in America. Wead and his cohorts have made every effort to establish themselves as the benefactors (“White messiahs”) of the schoolgirls while denying and vilifying the role of the Nigerians who brought them here through bogus reports.
“For avoidance of doubt even the university scholarship for the two girls in question was paid for by my pastor in USA and not Trump in 2017.
“The most shocking aspect of this is not just Trump claiming to have sponsored the Nigerian schoolgirls but that rather his policies threaten to expel them from the US.
“Some months ago, the Trump administration ordered all international students having online classes because of the pandemic to return to their countries.
“Although the administration cancelled the policy after it was sued by many universities, in September they unveiled another policy specifically targeting Nigerian students amongst others who it limited to a two-year stay in US.
“Some of the Chibok girls taken by the Nigerian Embassy in 2016 have not made significant academic progress in the past four years. Under Trump’s new policy, they would have had to leave the US after two years.
“The Trump policy which was published for public comment attracted over 32,000 responses in 30 days overwhelmingly condemning the policy as “racist” and “unfortunate.”
“It is therefore ironic that Trump is claiming sponsorship of Chibok schoolgirls when in fact he is doing the exact opposite!
“While politicians worldwide will say whatever it takes to garner votes, the list of Trump policies on Nigeria are self-evident:
*January 2020 banned Nigerians from immigrating to America
*September 2020 introduced policy limiting Nigerian students to two-year stay in America
*April 2020 Opposed second term for Dr Adesina as President of ADB
*October 2020 Opposed appointment of Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala – a Nigerian American – as DG of WTO in favour of a Korean
*2017 canceled funding to UNFPA the agency responsible for catering to the Chibok girls remaining in Nigeria.
“It is important to clarify that Trump is not the only politician to use the Chibok girls for politics.
“The government of Borno state under the previous administration in 2016 claimed to have been paying millions for the welfare of 57 escaped Chibok girls for years while we had been taking care of 10 of them since 2014 without a dime from Borno state or any other government in the world.
“Of course Buhari also used the Chibok girls issue for political mileage as well only to change once he secured power and attacked BBOG and myself too.
“However it is to be noted that all this political exploitation is not helpful. One of the girls taken over by the Nigerian embassy reportedly dropped out of school again and one attempted suicide in US last year after previously running away from the counsellor who the Nigerian embassy collaborated with to take her away.
“The counsellor herself is in divorce proceedings after she abandoned her husband and the Chibok girls to go to Nigeria for a contract.
“Like one of the released Chibok girls in Nigeria who survived Boko Haram captivity but attempted suicide once under the care of the Buhari regime, like a recurring decimal, an escaped Chibok girl here in US also attempted suicide under the “care” of the Nigerian Embassy.
“Those not taken by the embassy have graduated at various levels.
“It is important that this is clarified for the record”.