Nigeria

Social Media Campaign Stands by Nigerian Girls

photo credit: IDS
photo credit: IDS

On May 7, Institute of Development Studies staff and students joined the global campaign to #bringbackourgirls in Brighton. International newspapers and magazines report the campaign through social media has greatly raised awareness of the incidence. The world urges hundreds of kidnapped Nigerian girls to be released.

On April 14, at a school in the Nigerian town of Chibok, 276 schoolgirls were kidnapped while taking their final exams. The girls were taken by the extremist group known as Boko Haram (which roughly translates as “Western education is sinful”), who had disguised themselves as soldiers and forced the girls up into the back of trucks. Yet in the days that followed, appallingly little was done to help. The Nigerian military falsely claimed it had rescued the girls — only to retract the claim the very next day. The story barely registered with the international media.

Then, on April 23, Oby Ezekwesili, vice president of the World Bank for Africa, gave a speech in Nigeria in which she urged the government to intervene and “bring back our girls.” Soon after, Twitter users in Nigeria began to repeat her call, adopting the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.

(Can A Social Media Campaign Really #BringBackOurGirls? by Megan Gibson)

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