By Haruna Gimba
The 82 young women released by Boko Haram extremists earlier this month have joined those already freed in a special rehabilitation programme, Nigerian officials have said.
They were received on behalf of the Federal Government by the Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Jummai Alhassan at a rehabilitation center located in Abuja “We have the full consent of their parents to accommodate them here and accord them refresher courses,” an official said.
Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole said the girls will undergo various medical investigations and psycho-social tests. “We have also engaged the service of two medical doctors and in-house nurses who will handle any complaint of the girls and in case of any serious situation,” he said.
An undisclosed number of Boko Haram commanders were released in exchange for the girls. “It is our work to give them training to bring them to the level they can go back to school, to the formal school and compete with the others. Some of the girls were said to have had bullet and bomb fragments in their bodies and were made to undergo surgeries. “If anyone wants to go back today we can arrange for their parents to come and take her home but they are happy being here and learning what they are learning.”
Over 200 girls were abducted by Boko Haram terrorists from the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State, in 2014, triggering global outrage and calls for the rescue of the school girls. Speaking at a ceremony welcoming 82 newly rescued girls to a government rehabilitation facility in Abuja, Senator Aisha Alhassan said all the girls will be heading back to class in September.
Our correspondent that the girls were handed over to the Ministry of Health on May 30, by the Department of State Services (DSS).