Twenty-one of the Chibok girls that were kidnapped by the Boko Haram sect, two years ago have been released. According to BBC news, the girls were released in the early hours of Thursday, October 13.
It is understood the girls are being held by the security services in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, North-Eastern Nigeria.
It is not yet clear how the girls were rescued, but sources said the girls were picked up by military helicopter from Banki area of Borno state where Boko Haram militants dropped them off earlier today.
The military are yet to make an official statement to confirm this. The spokesman to President Buhari, has reportedly tweeted to confirm the girls’ release.
Sources close to the Borno state government told newsmen that some of the released Chibok girls were brought to the air force hospital in Maiduguri.
The girls are said to be undergoing screening to determine their state of health as well as their profile.
More than 200 girls were abducted in April 2014 from their school in Chibok, Borno state by the terrorists, while some of them have reportedly died, the rest have been held by the dreaded group.
In August, the sect released a video showing a camouflage-clad Boko Haram fighter addressing Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in front of about 50 of the girls, all stony-faced and clad in long robes and hijabs.
They claimed that some of the Chibok schoolgirls kidnapped had been killed in airstrikes by Nigeria’s military.
The set also made an insurgency’s call for a prisoner swap – asking the government to release its members jailed in Lagos, Abuja and the northeastern provincial capital of Maiduguri or forget about the girls.
Earlier in September, President Buhari said the government was willing to release some detained Boko Haram militants in exchange for the girls.
During a bilateral meeting with United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, on the sidelines of the 71st UN General Assembly in New York, president Buhari pleaded with the United Nations to help mediate with the terror group, Boko Haram, in order to free the over 200 abducted Chibok girls.
He told the UN Secretary-General that the effort of the government to negotiate with the terrorists was frustrated because it became difficult to identify credible leaders of the sect.
More updates on the released girls to come later…