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Chibok Girls today live in a different world

five years Ago, stand Emos Lawal in the small courtyard in Yola, in Northern Nigeria. At the time, he had not eaten anything for days, tears running down his ch

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Chibok Girls today live in a different world

five years Ago, stand Emos Lawal in the small courtyard in Yola, in Northern Nigeria. At the time, he had not eaten anything for days, tears running down his cheeks. "I felt guilty because I couldn't protect my daughter," he says. Comfort was one of the 276 Schoolgirls who were kidnapped by the terrorist organization, the Boko Haram , as the "Chibok Girls" were known worldwide, named after the small town in which they had been kidnapped by the Islamists.

112 girl missing

"Chibok Girls" welcome you five years later when, in these days of the abduction in April 2014, will be remembered at a time when the girls of that time long ago, young women have become. If you are to live. Of the 276 pupils were able to flee, 57, 107 were freed from the other 112, each track is missing. Some of them are probably alive.

In the first months and years after the abduction, many celebrities were still using the Hashtag #bringbackourgirls photograph, Michelle Obama and actress Angelina Jolie. In the meantime, the attention has decreased greatly.

"Comfort and the other girls often think of those who are not yet free," says the father of Emos Lawal. He came that day from the Region of Chibok to Yola, his daughter, from the University of pick up, where you studied with almost 100 other girls that want to but currently no Interviews, how the school communicates – what the members of Association have decided, says the father, it should not all come back.

Emos Lawal, father of a once-abducted schoolgirl. Photo: B. Dörries

His daughter go but, mostly, he says, so he often see them. Sometimes it is not enough for two phone calls a week, sometimes. After their release the girls only came once in the custody of the government, have been isolated on a military site for months, a little as if they were not victims, but perpetrators. The government feared that some of the girls could be become in the years of the hostage itself to terrorists – or, again, the victim of a kidnapping could be. None of this occurred.

Meanwhile, study a hundred of them in Yola, a sleepy town of about 100'000 inhabitants, whose biggest attraction is the American University is a modern Campus with its own Hotel and a swimming pool. Only the Elite of Nigeria can pay for the tuition fees, in a Region in which many not even the school fees of a few francs, in the month of may.

Emos Lawal had seen the future of his daughter on the field, not on the school or even at University. Like so many other parents. As her daughters came out of the hostage is free, the government decided to send you to the University and to pay the costs. A state that does not care otherwise, much to its citizens, showed something of a bad Conscience, because he couldn't protect the girls from violence and kidnapping. "I'm proud of my daughter, their independence and their education," says the farmer. In the village of the saw but not necessarily all, about 20 parents, he estimates, would have their children back at home, not at Uni. "Some parents want their daughters to marry so that you have about the man will again have access to them."

Far from the parents

Because at the Moment they are a day's journey away from Chibok, in terms of the pure driving time. And much further removed from the lives of their parents. It offers modern dormitories, with toilets on the same floor, with air conditioning and a television. Doctors want to some or politicians. Not farmers like their parents. However, he had nothing, the father says: "I don't know but, what you studied, what degree she does, or when it is finished." There is too little information from the University for the nationals. Some parents might feel as if you have away from you, the daughters again.

"There's always a few that say, I would my child prefer to be on the field. But you should not give too much to these naysayers, at the end of all but pride, when the child has the conclusion and a lot of opportunities," says Reginald Braggs. He was formerly in the US Marines, what you look at him today; after the conversation, he disappears into the gym. The former soldier Braggs is at the American University for the support of the Chibok Girls in charge, he sits in his small office, on the Desk, a map with the dedications of his students.

At the beginning, when the first girl came, he Worried, the mental state, but also to your academic maturity. With regards to your training, finally became during the captivity the clock just stopped, for many years, the girls were able to learn nothing. "Boko Haram" translates as "against Western education".

American way

Since 2017, the majority of women are now at the Uni, in the "New Foundation School", such as the program for the Chibok Girls. Started you have tutoring with a bit of math and English-and then realized that was enough. Now there is a complete care with a private psychologist and a Pastor. The goal: to make the young women of normal students. Because normal, you were also not here when you arrived. The students stared at the newcomers in the cafeteria, so for the former hostages, special opening Hours were introduced.

Meanwhile, says Braggs, I normalized the climate, were the first in the normal study and living off-Campus. The self-confidence grow with each passing day. It is a very American approach, which is practiced here. "No matter how I feel, I never give up, because I'm a winner", is on the wall of the community area boards will be informed about the winners of the presentation competition and the next spelling-bee trophy. Words like "soldier" and "poor" will get them submitted, Braggs and his colleagues are pretty much pain-free.

terror risk

What was not true, but for his students, as he admits to have been averted. The prior came to him sometimes as a single Person, so closely they were connected by the shared experience. As the recent father of a girl died, I cried the whole Dorm, as a wave of pain went through all of the body, tells Braggs. The relationship is positive, because a control of the other motivating, but also hard to come by, if a spiral of negative feelings arise.

What is going on but rarely, says Braggs. "You have experienced the worst, now you can get the Best," I promised the school to the former hostages. Until now you have kept my word. And the Nigerian government have paid up to now, still the fees.

For young women, has changed everything. For their parents and siblings. The father of Emos Lawal will drive back again the next day in his village, in a Region in which the terrorists are still present and raiding villages. "We can no longer run away but in front of them," says Lawal. "We have nothing where we can go."

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 24.04.2019, 18:43 PM

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