Recent Boko Haram attacks have left 11 parents of the 220 girls abducted by the group dead. In an attack on the Kautakari village by the Islamist militants, seven fathers of the missing girls were killed. A total of 51 villagers died in the attack on the village, which is loactedclose to Chibok.
In addition to the seven fathers, four other parents of the kidnapped girls have died due to illnesses caused by the trauma of having their daughters taken. One is reported to have died of heart failure, another from high blood pressure and the two others of natural causes related to the trauma.
Chibok community leader Pogu Bitrus was quoted as saying, “One father of two of the girls kidnapped just went into a kind of coma and kept repeating the names of his daughters, until life left him.”
Boko Haram militants are reported to be only 37 km (22 miles) from Chibok and closing in quickly from their location in the town of Damboa from where they have declared hegemony. Recent attacks in the Damboa area have killed hundreds of people and left more than 15,200 displaced.
Last month, Boko Haram attacked three villages surrounding Chibok, killing at least 54 people.
Meanwhile, the group is presumed to have been the source of a recent double bombing in Kaduna, also located in northern Nigeria, which killed at least 40 people, according to Nigerian police.
Boko Haram, whose names literally means “Western education is forbidden” has waged a terror campaign in northern Nigeria since 2009 aimed at establishing an Islamic state run by strict sharia law. The militants are known for targeting schools, churches, Christian areas and moderate Muslims.
According to the BBC, the two explosions in Kaduna were aimed at two Muslims: Dahiru Bauchi, a moderate cleric, and Muhammadu Buhari, a senior opposition leader. Both men were unharmed in the attacks.
Meanwhile in the Nigerian capital of Abuja, President Goodluck Jonathan met with relatives of the kidnapped girls.
“We are doing everything humanly possible to get the girls out,” Jonathan was quoted as saying. “This is not the time for talking much. This is the time for action. We will get to the time that we will tell stories. We will get to the time that we will celebrate, and I assure you that, by God’s grace, that time will come soon.”