A group, Catalyst for Global Peace and Social Justice (CPJ) has condemned the killing of Miss Hauwa Leman, one of the health workers under the programme of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), who was abducted by Boko Haram insurgents, affiliated to the Islamic State of West Africa (ISWA).
CPJ said in a statement issued by its convener, Abraham Sam Aiyedogbon, and Chas Nwam, that it received the news of the killing of Leman with shock and blamed the federal government for the poor handling of the abductions of Leman and other health workers.
The group added that it was troubled due to the lack of strategy on the part of the federal government, adding that the poor handling of the abductions was an ample evidence that this present administration is indifferent to issues of life and death, just like the past administration.
The peace and justice group noted that it took the federal government a very long time to engage the abductors of the lecturers of the University of Maiduguri, as well as the Police officer’s wives over their release.
“When the door of engagement finally opened between the government and the ISWA group, the health workers were already in captivity. Rather than take all the matters together, it seemed to serve the officials better to separate and play with the captors over the lives of the captives. Confronted with similar challenges, neighbouring Cameroon appears to have a clear set strategy that works for it. The result is that every high profile Cameroonian captives are regularly released without much ado from the hands of the same terror group,” CPJ explained.
CPJ noted that the federal government had also lost the initiative even in the negotiations it belatedly opened for the release of Leah Sharibu and the remaining health workers.
“We are embarrassed that this government is acting helplessly and declaring that it did everything possible to save Leman. That is never the language of a government. For instance, what were the contents of the ultimatum earlier handed out by the insurgents? Were the conditions outside of the scope of what the government had worked with before?” the group queried.
The group urged the government to redefine its strategy and framework of engagement with the insurgents in the area of release of non-combatant captives.
CPJ also seeks more reasonable step of designing a roadmap for peace, as well as urgent step to reopen every necessary door for the release of Sharibu and other remaining captives.