#BringBackOurGirls campaign group denies DSS allegation


#BringBackOurGirls campaigners led by Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili has denied an allegation by the Department of State Services, DSS, that the
group had turned into a franchise. the campaign group has been leading protest for the release of the more than 200 school girls abducted by Islamic insurgents, Boko Haram.

In a statement by the Coordinators, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili and
Hadiza Bala Usman, in Abuja yesterday, the group said it was just
a protest group and accused security agencies of harassment,
vilification, innuendoes and threats.
It will be recalled that, Tuesday, the spokesperson for DSS, Mrs.
Marilyn Ogar, accused the BringBackOurGirls campaigners of
turning the protest into a franchise.

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However, the statement of the group read in part: “For over two
months, security agencies have harassed and sought to intimidate
our movement incessantly. The latest was the statement on
Tuesday credited to the Deputy Director of Department of State
Services, Mrs. Marilyn Ogar who described the
#BringBackOurGirls campaign as a franchise.

“This is a dangerous and unprecedented attack because as is well
known in security circles, the term ‘franchise’ is used to refer to
inter related terrorist cells.
“She is reported to have said that if indeed our movement ‘was a
protest group it would not need to force members to register and
wear tags’.

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“There is a clear attempt to smear our work with a link to Chibok
and Sambisa forest. It is clear from these comments that the
security agencies are setting up the movement for a crackdown
based on trumped up accusations.

“Our activities are open and our meetings are in a public space,
the Unity Fountain. There is no compulsion to membership and
our symbols such as the red T shirts, face caps and pins are
donated voluntarily be members. We are motivated by empathy
and the need to search and rescue these girls.”

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