By Maxwell Adeyemi Adeleye
The co-convener of #BringBackOurGirls group (BBOG), Dr Oby Ezekwesili, has reiterated that the group will continue to preserve and protect its core value decision as a Non-Fundraising Citizens Movement.Ezekwesili who was reacting to the issues raised after the Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative and the Peace Corps of Nigeria, used the inscription of #BringBackOurGirls, on the event’s backdrop, stated that the group has continued to stand for its non- funding stance and no one should drag the group’s name into any fund raising event.
“For more than 905 days of advocacy, @BBOG_Nigeria maintained its non-fund raising stance. So, don’t drag it into such. It is wrong to do so.
“@BBOG_Nigeria shall preserve and; protect its core value decision as a Non-Fundraising Citizens Movement. It has never said it is a Franchise,” she tweeted.
She added that the group from the onset in 2014 has made the decision which she added it intend to keep as it keep demanding for the release of the remaining Chibok girls.
“What’s hard to understand? From the outset in 2014, @BBOG_Nigeria decided that the Movement shall never be mired in donations. Simple.
“We, @BBOG_Nigeria don’t raise funds . If your organisation is raising funds, don’t call it “BBOG stakeholders “. ETHICS matter, not so?,” she tweeted.
Earlier in a press release concerning the issue, the group stated that it was not a party to the said event which was the official inauguration and signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Chibok Girls Endowment Project, a project made in collaboration with the NGO headed by President Muhammadu Buhari’s daughter, Hadiza Bello.
“Following repeated enquiries from the media, we stumbled upon information of an event tagged “Official Inauguration and Signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Chibok Girls Endowment Project” organised by the “Peace Corps of Nigeria” and “Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative”, with Hadiza Buhari-Bello.
“We are shocked, perplexed and completely dumbfounded to see the bold inscription of our hard-earned name, #BringBackOurGirls, on the event’s backdrop. We state categorically that we are not party to the said event and have absolutely no information of its origin. We urge the general public to disregard attempts at linking our movement to this highly suspicious event.
“After 902 days of painstaking advocacy, it is disheartening and unfortunate to suddenly see attempts, by external actors, to use it for selfish purposes. We have carefully built our reputation as a well-organized and disciplined global movement that is completely self-funded.
“The deliberate decision, to remain funded by sacrificial contributions of members for our very negligible needs, is the reason we are solely a Citizens’ Movement, and not an NGO. It will be highly injurious to allow it be dragged in the mud at this point. We therefore demand an immediate retraction and unreserved apology from the organisers,” it had said.