…parents confirm daughter’s voice
…DSS analysing audio recording – Presidency
The remaining Dapchi schoolgirl in the custody of Boko Haram factional group, Leah Sharibu, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to help her regain freedom.
She made the plea in an exclusive audio clip published by TheCable on Monday.
In the clip, the 15-year-old who has been in captivity for six months also sought help for her family.
“I am Leah Sharibu, the girl that was abducted in GGSS Dapchi. I am calling on the government, particularly, the President to pity me and get me out of this serious situation,” she said in Hausa.
The schoolgirl added, “I also plead to the members of the public to help my mother, my father, my younger brother and relatives. Kindly help me out of my predicament.
“I am calling on the government and people of goodwill to intervene to get me out of my current situation. I am begging you to treat me with compassion. Thank you.”
Leah, one of the over 100 schoolgirls abducted in February from the Government Girls Secondary School, Dapchi in Yobe State, was kept in captivity by the terrorists reportedly for refusing to renounce Christianity.
She was the only Christian among the girls.
Following the abduction, the Federal Government said it was going with the option of negotiation to ensure the Dapchi girls regain their freedom rather than the use of military force.
This led to the release of the girls (except Leah) who were brought back to the community by the terrorists in March after spending four weeks in captivity.
But Leah’s continued stay in the terrorists’ captivity sparked a widespread criticism, although the government said it was making efforts to ensure her safe return.
Contrary to the claims that no money was paid for the release of the other Dapchi schoolgirls, the United Nations said they were returned “in exchange for a large ransom payment.”
A report released by the UN in mid-August also accused some non-governmental organisations of sending funds to Boko Haram and other local terrorist groups in the West African region.
The parents of Leah Sharibu have confirmed the voice in an audio message as their daughter’s.
Leah’s audio message was published yesterday by “The Cable” online news platform with her recent picture in which she is wearing a brown hijab and sitting on a mat.
The parents of Leah to confirm the veracity of the voice and both were in agreement that it is their daughter’s.
Mr. Nathan Sheribu and his wife Rebecca told our correspondent on phone that their hope had been re-ignited after hearing their daughter’s voice and seeing her picture.
“I can confirm to you that the voice that spoke is that of my daughter Leah. It is her voice, no doubt. I am happy that I can hear my daughter speak. This has given me hope that she is alive. I am also happy to see her recent picture displayed.
“My request is the same with my daughter’s. The government should play their part now by intensifying efforts to secure her freedom.,” Sharibu said.
The mother’s hope never died, though it has now doubled. She will however become happier the day her daughter is freed.
Like her husband, Mrs Sharibu also called on President Muhammadu Buhari to swing into action to free her daughter.
She also called on her daughter’s captors to unconditionally release her to save her from the trauma she is going through.
In the last seven months, there have been doubts as to whether she was still alive as well as whether she was still holding on to her Christian faith.
More than a month ago, the Executive Director of Complete Care Foundation, Aisha Wakil, who is popularly known as Mama Boko Haram, told reporters in Maiduguri that Leah was alive and holding on to her faith.
Meanwhile, the Presidency, on Monday, confirmed it was aware of the audio recording in which Leah Sharibu, the remaining Dapchi schoolgirl held captive by a faction of the Boko Haram, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to help free her.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, revealed this via his Twitter handle that the Department of State Services (DSS) was investigating the clip and the Federal Government would work on the outcome of the investigation.