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Buhari releases emotional statement on Leah Sharibu, Christian girl who refuses to convert to Islam and remains in custody of Boko Haram Islamist terrorists

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday released a personal statement on Leah Shabiru, two years after at least 110 children were kidnapped in the town of Dapchi by Boko Haram Islamist terrorists from Northern Nigeria.

At least 107 children survived the ordeal. Today, all but one – Leah Sharibu – are returned to their families.

Now aged 16, Leah Shabiru remains in the hands of the terrorists because she refuses to renounce her Christian faith.

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In a personal statement he signed, President Buhari said he is working hard to get her released.

Read full statement by Buhari as sent to TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington DC


On the second anniversary of Dapchi, Muhammadu Buhari, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria makes the following statement:

“Two years ago, 110 innocent children from the town of Dapchi were taken, against their will, by the terrorists of Boko Haram. 107 survived the ordeal. Today all but one – Leah Sharibu – are returned to their families.

“Now aged 16, Leah remains in the hands of the terrorists – they say because she refuses to renounce her Christian faith.

“We say, as the government for and of all Nigerians, that no person has the right to force another to change their faith against their will and that all life is sacred.

“This government continues and seeks to secure the release of all children and captives of terrorists – and we do so regardless of their creed or the name of their creator.

“As we as redouble our efforts for Leah’s return, we can never allow the terrorists to divide us – Christian against Muslim, Muslim against Christian. We are all Sons of Abraham. And all Nigerians have the same worth and rights before the law, and before God”.


Muhammadu Buhari,

President and Commander-in Chief,

Federal Republic of Nigeria,




Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, Simon leads a brilliant team of reporters, freelance journalists, analysts, researchers and contributors from around the world to run TODAY NEWS AFRICA as editor-in-chief. Simon Ateba's journalistic experience spans over 10 years and covers many beats, including business and investment, information technology, politics, diplomacy, human rights, science reporting and much more. Write him:


  1. This President’s words are not worth more than the paper upon which there are inked. This president has a dangerous antecedents of being complicit and in cavort with terrorists. The president who as military president for the slightest infraction is ready to execute one at the stake is playing chicanery games with treasonable and coldblooded terrorists, releasing them at the earliest opportunities into the society. This president who closed borders only to create a porous leaking northern border with the flux of criminals and terrorists can never be trusted. Now that they ensured the defilement of Leah Sharibu this callous man is once again thinking he can play on the naïve and easy forgetfulness of Nigerians to get away with murder. What has he done about the killers of Esther Oluwale, Bridget Patient Abahime, and now those of countless Nigerians in the hands of Miyetti Allah herdsmen killer, Boko Haram of CAN Michika LG Chairman, Rev. Lawan Indimi, Catholic Seminarian, Michael Nnaji, Mrs. Ataga, and many others. The president and his scheme orchestrator in Kaduna knows better what game and gimmicky they are about. When El Rufai lit the fire of these violence in December 2016, killing the innocent in southern Kaduna what did this evil man do? For years his violence laden speeches and propensity to maneuver religion when in 1984 he inscribed Nigeria into the OIC–that IBB took the beating for–is legendary. Let Nigerians ask: why is it that the same Boko terrorists made their home in Sambisa Forest the same place Buhari opened up as his headquarters fighting the Chadian intrusion into Nigeria in 1983, and during which he Buhari insubordinated then President Shehu Shagari his C-in-C? Why did the terrorist group named him their Negotiator in Chief! Now, he’s playing the same dubious detracting and distracting game when in the lead up to the 2015 elections they faked the SUV attacks claiming it was by Boko! This deception cover deceit gaming is becoming all too worn, and his weightless statements very annoying! Action speaks louder than voice. The Boko Haram Shekau outing and attacks against Buhari is all charade, it is to enable the west cut him some slack. It is connivance to allude that even he Buhari is hated by the group, another dumb ass toyish detour and deception! He, Buhari, and Osibanjo their Barbie in the cabal’s hands, know better. All are pursuing their diverse interests. Sold-out OsiB is the one I pity at the end of the day–used like a tissue and conveniently discarded!


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