UK to assist Nigeria in securing release of Leah Sharibu
The UK has promised to support efforts to secure the release of Leah Sharibu who has remained in Boko Haram captivity since she was adopted in February.
Sharibu, a 15-year old girl, was among 119 students abducted from Government Girls Science Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe state.
All the girls were subsequently released, except five who reportedly died in detention, but Sharibu the only Christian, was held back for “refusing to renounce her faith”.
According to Premier Christian Radio, the house of commons (lower chamber of the UK parliament) discussed about Sharibu at pleanry on Wednesday.
Tom Brake, member of parliament (MP) for Carshalton and Wallington, was said to have asked the secretary of state for foreign and commonwealth affairs for updates on his department’s discussions with Nigerian authorities on the prolonged detention of Sharibu.
In her response, Harriett Baldwin, minister of state for Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, said the foreign secretary spoke to Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on February 26 and extended an offer of additional support from the UK government.
“Attacks on schools and abductions of children are abhorrent and must stop. The government of Nigeria has said they are making all efforts to secure her release,” she said.
“The UK is resolute in its support for Nigeria in the fight against Boko Haram, and are providing a substantial package of intelligence, military and humanitarian support to assist in the response to the ongoing conflict.”