Absentee First Lady Aisha Buhari demands end to school abductions of female students

The First Lady calls on stakeholders to ensure Nigerian girls and women are safe everywhere.

First Lady, Aisha Buhari, has disengaged from public activities for nearly half a year [Twitter/@aishambuhari]

The First Lady has withdrawn from the public glare since last year and is rumoured to have relocated to the United Arab Emirates after her daughter's September wedding.

She has not been spotted at any public engagements and been largely invisible until her message championing better lives for Nigerian women on Monday, March 8, 2021.

The First Lady commended the contribution of girls and women to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially as they have been badly-affected in respect to education, career, and the proliferation of domestic violence.

She stressed the importance of addressing these negative effects of the pandemic on women, and protecting them from criminal elements.

"As a mother, I share the sorrow and agony of the victims and their families.

"I am also not unaware of the impact that these abductions could have in reverting many successes we have hitherto achieved, especially in terms of girl-child education and early marriages," she said.

The First Lady called on stakeholders at all levels to ensure that girls and women are safe anywhere they find themselves.

Her message comes on the heels of the abduction of 279 girls last month from a school in Jangebe, Zamfara State. The girls were released days later after their captors negotiated with the government.

Similar mass abduction of hundreds of female students have happened in the past in Chibok, Borno in 2014, and Dapchi, Yobe in 2018.

Countless others have been abducted and forced into early marriage or suicide bombing by Boko Haram fighters that have terrorised the northeast region for over 11 years.

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