The harsh reality, at this juncture, is that the thirteen people freed by Boko Haram this week represent a drop in the ocean – as Nigeria continues to grapple with the terrorist activities which plague the African country.
The Nigerian government is currently working in partnership with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRS), to ensure that the needs of those who have been released are addressed. However, there is an acknowledgement from both parties, that this battle simply isn’t being won.
The three university lecturers, who were kidnapped in a separate raid last year, were actually kidnapped while doing oil prospecting work for the Nigerian government when they were captured.
If they could not be protected, what chance do ordinary civilians have?
Speaking to the Associated Press this week, Presidential spokesman Garba Shehu said: “Their release followed a series of negotiations as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari and was facilitated by the International Committee of the Red Cross.”
The Chibok girls, for example, are still being held by Boko Haram, and that is a problem.
“We are so pleased that these 13 people are free and will be able to see their families again,” said Patrick Youssef, ICRC deputy regional director for Africa.
“There are many people missing or being held against their will … we hope that these people, too, will get to return to their families soon,” added Youssef.