[easy-social-share buttons="facebook,twitter" counters=0 style="button"]
Parents of the 21 Chibok schoolgirls who were released on Thursday were on their way to Abuja last night after an all day journey from Borno State for a reunion with their long missing daughters.
Fathers and mothers are expected to set their eyes on their beloved ones for the first time in over two years in a re-union that is bound to be highly emotional.
The girls are currently in the custody of the Department of State Security (DSS) which, along with the Swiss Government and Maiduguri lawyer Mustapha Zanna, negotiated their release from Boko Haram.
A medical team has been attending to them since their return from custody.
All the girls have spoken with their parents on the phone since their arrival in Abuja.
But the Department of State Security Services (DSS) has restricted access to the girls.
Senate Leader, Senator Ali Ndume who is from Borno State visited the girls yesterday and broke down in tears on sighting them.
The girls consoled him.
The girls appeared far better than they were when they arrived in Abuja on Thursday.
There was evidence of joy all over them.
And they sang, praising God and thanking Ndume.
“Allah Ya kawo baba mu, mugode Allah”( God has brought our father, we praise the Almighty God) was the theme of their song.
A top source told The Nation that logistics delayed the parents/girls reunion.
“Due to logistics, the 21 girls have not met with their parents. We need to guarantee their safety and make their trip comfortable. But the parents are in transit (as at 8pm on Saturday) and by Sunday, they will reunite with their children,” the source said.
“So far, all the girls have spoken with their parents and relations on the phone. They are in touch and eager to meet with them.
“The DSS has however restricted access to the girls for strategic reasons. We do not want to make them vulnerable again since they are undergoing rehabilitation.”
Senate Leader Ndume was allowed to meet with the girls between 3pm and 4pm yesterday.
Another source said: “Upon sighting the girls, Ndume wept but the girls milled around consoling him. They were in high spirit.
Speaking with our correspondent last night, Ndume confirmed the audience with the girls.
He said: “I was with them for an hour and I observed that their recovery is rapid. They are looking forward to meeting their parents on Sunday (today).
“We thank the Federal Government for securing the release of these girls. With this development, there is bright light at the end of the tunnel.”
Responding to a question, Ndume said: “There was no sign that the girls were molested or forced to abandon Christianity in captivity. Gloria, who is their leader led the Christian prayer session during my visit. She offered the prayer in a moving manner and I said ‘you are qualified to be a pastor.’
“They were in good spirit, the medical experts, psychologists and other social workers have done a good job. I am optimistic that they will recover faster.”
A member of the Chibok community who does not want to be named said last night that a thanksgiving service will be held for the safe return of the girls in an undisclosed church in Abuja today.