Former media aide to ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, Reuben Abati, has said that his former boss secured the release of some Chibok girls who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. Reuben Abati disclosed this on Wednesday during a show he anchored on ARISE TV in which he interviewed Femi Adesina, a spokesman of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Abati said Jonathan was advised by Sambo Dasuki, the then national security adviser (NSA), against making the release public in order to protect the identities of the freed girls.
He said: “There was headway. We rescued many of the girls but the advice from the NSA at the time was that we should not publicise it because of the identities of those girls. I witnessed it on many occasions. Those girls were brought to the president.
“He met with them. In fact, some of them were sent to schools in the United States and United Kingdom. There were strict instructions not to publicise it because government thought that the identities of those girls should not be exposed. But l saw you guys making a dance out of the ones you rescued.
“In our time, we rescued some girls but we were under strict instruction not to publicise it. Check the records. The DSS, the intelligence agency, you should ask them. They will have the records.”
Boko Haram insurgents kidnapped 276 girls from Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, in Borno state on April 14, 2014.
While 163 of the girls have been returned, over 100 are believed to be in the custody of the terrorist group with some thought to be dead.