I can feel their pain
Today as usual, I write from my heart, but this time as a woman, a future mother, and therefore as a pillar of my country, Africa and the world in general. Picturing how much my mother labored back in the days, I can only imagine what the parents of the abducted girls go through as days go by and there’s not even a single sign of hope for them to find their daughters. It’s all heart-breaking! Whenever I think about the tragedy that befell Nigeria weeks ago, figures cease to be ‘just numbers’. At first thought, it may not ring a bell to somebody, but the reality is that 234 girls (or probably more, who knows?) were abducted from their school as they sat for a Physics exam by the Boko-Horam militants. They kill, kidnap & rape women & believe education is a sin.
They are out there in the wilderness; scared, lonely, traumatized, hungry, screaming for help, and yet their voices have gone unheard since out of ideas on how they can escape their captors…They are traumatized, they must be crying, because I can hear their voices in my head whenever I think of them. I can imagine the darkness that reigns wherever they are being kept, and I can feel their hearts race, just on the thought of how they can escape. Last night was as hard for me to catch some sleep, somehow the thought of them couldn’t allow that for a while. Unfortunately, I can’t do much about it (practically). But as I labor with the heavy heart that it leaves me with, I will use the most affordable means to make my voice heard. They are not just stolen girls, they are stolen lives, shattered dreams; they are the future of Africa, the limelight of Nigeria.
In my own handwriting, I support the campaign against the abduction. I want to believe that every single girl out there is worth some effort to rescue them.
Probably, one may think that writing about this will not offer a better solution but at least there is a single soul out there who may not know what exactly is going on or, probably that does not know how they can help out. Plus, it may probably help me out since I have no-one to directly confront about it, or at least convince about my opinion on the case. So, for now, let me stick to my escape route; let me say it loud through an article on my blog. It’s all I can do, on addition to sending in a prayer for these girls, for God to keep them safe and strong.
Back when I was still in school, we were reminded every now and then that “when you educate a man, you educate one person; but when you educate a woman, you raise a nation”. My concern here is not that Nigeria has failed to educate these girls (not like they haven’t failed though); rather, that as a country, Nigeria’s embarrassment has come out loud and clear in their failure to protect or at least to make its citizens reassured of protection; one of the assets any country would ever give to its nationals. More so, the effects of this failure have shown up when the country that it is has also failed to at least protect young girls.
It’s surprising that the US’ former President, Bill Clinton still regrets his inaction back in 1994 as Rwanda was almost swept off the world map in 1994. But because the human race probably didn’t pick enough lessons, it took a while for the international community, African Union, or even the international media to realize that the abducted girls deserved the same attention that they have always given worthless issues. The attention that the international community along with media gave recent issues like the famous Uganda’s homosexual bill and the likes leaves a lot to wonder why the same wasn’t given to the young girls. Then I suddenly remember that Nigeria doesn’t seem to have the same resources like those other countries, to probably entice their attention! God forbid! The failure of either the international community, United Nations or even the African Union to rescue these girls leaves a lot of room for someone to wonder what would actually be happening now if this same story was a reality somewhere else, and not in Africa (Nigeria) as it happens to be. Of course they have promised to help find the girls, but what if this help takes only so long?? After all, it took more than two weeks for the international media to consider it as an issue worth their attention. And it gets worse when one hears that protest leaders are now being arrested for the cause they are fighting for.
I keep wondering though if the case would be the same supposing one of these girls was a daughter of the ‘big men’ in any of the countries on the globe. But for a minute, let’s not think of who their parents are because that doesn’t matter for now. What really matters is the fact that these girls deserve a right to live, a right to come back to a warm reception by their parents, a right to be loved, and a right to belong to their families. Plus, above all else, they deserve a right to education, just like the rest of us enjoyed that.
Having said all that, I can’t stop thinking of a woman, a mother, and most of all, a mother of the nation pretending to believe that all those mothers crying themselves out day in, day out would be making up such stories, or even working with the so-called Boko Horam. This is all wrong!! They have been hurt enough already. If you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.
But because I can’t have the authority to do more than raise my voice, I will only join in the mass campaign on social media. I will make as much noise as I can about these girls, through the ‘#BringBackOurGirls’ hashtag. I will try to make sure that my voice is loud enough; it’s the best way for now I can contribute to the cause, reaching out to all authorities, all individuals, to do all possible, to secure the lives of the 234 girls. (Did I say 234? Well, it could get worse! Eight more Nigerian girls were kidnapped last evening).If I may say this again and again, what Nigeria needs right now is not financial assistance, it needs a practical solution, it needs a friend. And if all world leaders converged early enough to offer this, it wouldn’t have got this worse.But then again, its not yet too late, actually if we could have the same campaigns in all African countries before we even make noise to the international community to intervene, probably they would give issues that affect us more attention.
Hoping that it will be helpful enough. Today it’s Nigeria, tomorrow it could be another country. Who knows? Join the rest of the world to save Nigeria’s innocent souls.