Contrary to wide speculations, Mohammed Sidi, the Director- General of the National Emergency Management Agency, has disclosed that only six of the 275 females rescued from Sambisa forest in Borno state are pregnant.
The NEMA boss who spoke at an interactive forum organized by 1 Nigeria Initiative, a non-governmental organisation, in Abuja on Sunday allayed the fears of Nigerians that most of the rescued females were pregnant, saying that the speculation was incorrect.
He said, “I must put it on record that only six of them came with pregnancy and we must be very careful not to stigmatise these innocent Nigerians.
“This is necessary so that we do not end up stigmatising the child that is yet unborn. I think we must respect their rights”.
Sidi revealed that 70 per cent of the rescued females were below five years, while about 63 of them could not identify their relatives.
“It is a terrible situation to have children under five unaccompanied, meaning that they have lost their parents and we cannot link with their parents at the moment”.
Mr. Sidi also said that the women had been duly interrogated by the military and confirmed as posing no threat to the society. This however is a contradiction to earlier reports which revealed that some of the women may have been radicalised.
Sidi said that most of the displaced persons had begun moving from the camps back to their various communities as the terrorists had been driven out of the areas by the military.
“Most communities under the occupation of Boko Haram have been recovered and peace has returned, so the displaced persons are beginning to move back to their various communities”, he said.
Sidi also appraised the troops for the successes recorded in routing out the insurgents from their strongholds. He also commended the United Nations, the Red Cross society and other non-governmental organisations for their assistance in the management of IDP’s in Adamawa, Borno, Gombe and Yobe states.