The Federal Government has said that some of the schoolgirls released by Boko Haram terrorists over the weekend would need surgery for various ailments.
Minister of Women Affairs, Hajiya Jummai Alhassan, who said this at a press conference in Abuja, said the girls were undergoing treatment that would take a few weeks to complete.
82 of the girls were released after negotiations involving the Swiss Government, the Red Cross and the Federal Government on one side and the terror sect on the other.
21 of the girls were released in October 2016, but had yet to be reunited with their parents.
The minister said results of the medical tests so far conducted on the 82 Chibok girls, who were kidnapped from the Government Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State, in April 2014, had shown that some of the youngsters needed to be operated upon.
She stated that the medical screening, being carried out on the girls, would be completed between two and three weeks. “The 82 Chibok girls are currently undergoing medical screening in Abuja. Some of them need surgery; this should be completed in two to three weeks,” she said.
Alhassan stated that before the arrival of the 82 girls, the Federal Government had been taking care of the 21 previously released girls and four babies.
She added that the 21 girls came back in bad shape and spent almost two months under medical care and were handed over to her on December 22, 2016. The minister explained that the parents of the 21 girls were reunited with their daughters within one week of their return in October 2016.
“Upon return, all the 21 Chibok girls said they wanted to go back to school, but that they didn’t want to go to school in Chibok,” she said.
According to her, the girls travelled to Chibok for Christmas in December 2016 as soon as they emerged from medical care and spent two weeks there.
She said although they were scheduled to travel to Chibok again for Easter, security situation at that time was not conducive enough, so their parents were invited to Abuja.
Alhassan disclosed that it was the choice of the Chibok girls and their parents to stay under the care of the Federal Government in Abuja.
She added that arrangements were already being made to transport the parents of the new 82 girls to Abuja once they identified their daughters among the pictures of the girls sent to Chibok.
She stated, “The parents and the 82 girls will soon unite in a couple of days, but it will have to be well planned. It is not going to be easy to transport all 82 parents. That is 164 persons. Transportation and security have to be provided because the number is quite large, and you all know how sensitive Borno State is at the moment”.
The 21 girls, who were released in October, 2016, had been re-united with the 82 girls. “Yesterday (Wednesday), we took the first set of 21 girls to visit the 82 girls at the medical facilities where the 82 girls are being treated to reassure them that all is well,” she said.