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British MP asks May to make Leah’s release ‘Priority’

West & Central Africa

British MP asks May to make Leah’s release ‘Priority’

Report by Hassan John

A member of the Scottish National Party, SNP, and a Member of the British Parliament, David Linden has asked the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, to make the release of Leah Sharibu, who has been kept captive by the Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram, for more than a year because she is a Christian, a priority.

Leah Sharibu was one of 110 girls who was abducted from a college in Daphci, Yobe state, on 19th February 2018 by a faction of Boko Haram called al Barnawi.

The MP for Glasgow East said he has “profound concerns” about “any recent representations that have been made to the Nigerian government regarding Ms Sharibu’s case”.

The Member of Parliament said it is noticeably clear that Leah is held captive for religious reasons as 104 of the 110 girls were released.

“The Nigerian Government has a clear constitutional obligation to ensure that every citizen is ‘protected irrespective of his/her gender, culture and religious belief,” Linden said and underscored the point that “a minor was not only left in the hands of terrorists on account of her religious beliefs when her surviving colleagues were released; she also continues to suffer multiple and severe violations…It is a terrible indictment of the Nigerian Government’s failure to assist a vulnerable citizen, and of an international community that has not held it sufficiently to account for this,” Linden said.

Linden recounted that Leah Sharibu is not the only captive, there are also humanitarian workers, one of which is Alice Ngaddah, a nurse employed by UNICEF while the other’s murderous killing was recoded and posted by Boko Haram.

Linden criticized the Nigerian government for not doing enough to ensure the freedom of Leah and 112 other girls abducted in a secondary school in Chibok in 2014 who are still in captivity.

Linden said he “would like to express my serious concern about your decision to congratulate Muhammadu Buhari on his electoral victory, despite the elections being marred by violence and irregularities.” Notably the “largely Christian area in the south of Kaduna state, insufficient ballot papers were sent to polling stations…the situation in Nigeria is utterly intolerable and I would like to see much greater focus given to this issue by Her Majesty’s Government,” he concluded asking the British government to demand answers and results from the Nigerian government.

Featured image: CC/Global News

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