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Nigeria: Over 200 Chibok girls still missing three years after abduction
12 April 2017
On Friday 14 April 2017 it will be three years since the abduction of 275 school girls from Chibok by Boko Haram militants. 205 of the girls are still missing.
An Open Doors worker recently spoke to Yakubu Nkeki Maina, a representative of the Chibok parents. Yakubu said, "We feel deceived by the government. Promises are made publicly but nothing is done to make this promise a reality. We are subjected to sleepless nights and pain at heart that is on the increase by the day. We feel cheated. It seems that we cannot count on the government. We look up to God who is able to come to our rescue."
23 of the parents have died since the girls were abducted, and many continue to have stress related health problems. Although the situation in Chibok is slowly improving, life is still difficult for the families of the abducted girls. The Open Doors worker who recently visited Chibok said, "Things looked almost normal, but I soon learned that people are cautious because Boko Haram has recently attacked nearby towns like Mifah, Kautikari, Makalama and Balakle in recent weeks and scores of families have been displaced to Mbalala, 5km from Chibok. In fact I could hear the blaring sirens of military vehicles all the time.
"Markets are operational and three of the thirteen schools in town have reopened partially although parents are terrified of sending their children there after what happened to their daughters. Many pastors have returned to Chibok and church life is becoming stronger. But activities in churches are carried out under heavy security."
Thanks to Open Doors supporters, Open Doors has been able to provide the Chibok families with food, medical care and trauma care, as well as delivering messages of support from around the world to assure the Chibok families that they have not been forgotten.
Stand with your church family in northern Nigeria
Nigeria is number 12 on the Open Doors 2017 World Watch List, the annual ranking of countries where Christians face the most extreme persecution. Christians in northern Nigeria have not only faced attack by Boko Haram, but also Hausa-Fulani herdsmen, a traditionally nomadic Islamic tribe. In 12 of the northern states, Sharia (Islamic law) has been implemented, and Christians in these states face discrimination and restrictions in accessing community resources, such as clean water, health clinics and higher education. Displaced Christians often also suffer discrimination when aid is being distributed.
Open Doors partners with the local church to strengthen and equip persecuted Christians in northern Nigeria through training, children's education, community development projects, legal assistance, emergency relief and trauma counselling.
There are three things you can do to support your church family in nothern Nigeria:
- Pray. Use the prayer points below.
- Give. Every £60 can provide emergency food aid to a family in Nigeria for six weeks, to help them simply survive.
- Speak out. Raise your voice for our persecuted church family in Nigeria. Write to the Nigerian High Commission and ask the Nigerian government to do more for persecuted believers.
- Praise God for the Chibok girls who have escaped Boko Haram - pray for their healing after their traumatic experience
- For comfort and strength for the girls who are still being held captive, and that they would be released soon
- For wisdom for those who are negotiating for the release of the missing girls
- For provision and hope for the families of the Chibok girls
- That God would change the hearts of members of Boko Haram and turn them to Himself.
More News from Nigeria:
- 12 killed in Easter Sunday attack
- Ten new medical clinics bring life-saving care to Christians
- 50,000 Christians strengthened through radio
- At least 15 killed in Fulani herdsmen strikes
- Displaced twice by Boko Haram, Rebecca now helps over 2,000 widows and orphans
Find out more about persecution in Nigeria.