Determined to shore up support for the global #BringBackOurGirls (BBOG) campaign, Nigeria's top artiste, Innocent Idibia, popularly known as 2face, has released a music video “Break the Silence”.
The single, which is primarily a call for peace and unity, is timely especially after the abduction of the over 200 girls from Government Secondary School, Chibok in Borno State, by the Boko Haram sect over 50 days ago.
There has been global outrage against the abduction just as many countries have joined Nigeria both in the rescue operation to free the abducted girls and also tackle terrorism in the sub-region.
According to Idibia, the song is a call for the safe return of the Chibok girls and work towards peace building which must be sustained.
He said: “This is just another step in the journey towards the promotion of peace and unity in our nation and the world. It is a timely response to the global call for the release of the abducted Chibok girls and the restoration of peace in Nigeria."
The music video, which paraded a horde of music stars under the umbrella of Idibia's Million Voices for Peace (MVP) project, recorded the song to also raise funds to support the work of the Nigerian Red Cross.
Aside Idibia, other stars who featured in the video are Precision Productions and Machel Montano from Trinidad & Tobago; Samini, K-Slim, PKD, Squadee from Ghana; and Spyke, Sound Sultan, Essence, Righteousman, Joe El and Ferre Galo from the Republic of Congo.
Meanwhile, Spaces for Change, a non-profit organisation working to infuse human rights into social and economic governance processes in Nigeria through advocacy, public interest litigation and community action, has said there is need to go beyond the social media hashtag campaign to bring back the kidnapped girls.
Its executive director, Mrs. Victoria Ohaeri, who spoke to THISDAY said the #BeyondtheHashtags is a conversation seeking to interrogate and evaluate the handling of the counter-terrorism operations in the northern part of the country, with a special focus on the abduction of the hundreds of the Chibok schoolgirls.
She said this conclusion was reached by the Citizens Forum, comprising legal experts, human rights advocates, community leaders, students, public servants, security operatives, media professionals, concerned citizens and civil society organisations, who decided to unite to take the anti-terror campaign beyond the streets and online action.
Ohaeri said beyond the social media action, there is need to deal with corruption, as dealing with Boko Haram-led terrorism in an environment of government corruption and human rights abuses, is unlikely to yield lasting peace and positive outcomes.
She said: "The Boko Haram insurgency is not a regional crisis. Therefore, to win the war against festering insecurity, the Boko Haram insurgency must be viewed as an urgent national crisis requiring a comprehensive national response to the situation.”