WIMBIZ Town Hall  Meeting
On Friday the 16th of May, the Women in Management, Business & Public Service (WIMBIZ) had a town hall meeting at Terra Kulture with the aim of identifying practical steps and the way forward after Chibok.
The meeting was borne out of the kidnap of  more than 200 Chibok school girls over a month ago. One of the speakers at the event was Mr. Gbenga Sesan the ExecutiveDirector, Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN). Mr. Sesan spoke passionately about the missing girls and the #BringBackOurGirls campaign.

“Everyone who is supposed to say something about the missing girls has lied but the pressure is working” Gbenga Sesan.

Whilst he expressed his displeasure at the government and their slow response to the kidnap issue, he admonished that the time to allocate blame was over and now everyone must do whatever (tweeting, protesting, talking, writing letters to state representatives etc) they can to ensure that there is pressure on the government to bring the girls back.

Gbenga Sesan: Whatever stability you have built around yourself is not safe unless Nigeria is safe- Get involved now!

Sesan also connected Nigeria’s insecurity to unemployment, noting that 56% unemployment rate is alarming and too much to be ignored. He stressed that business people should learn to invest on the places termed “the bottom of the pyramid” because the ones that would cause problems are those that were neglected.

The deputy governor of Lagos state who was present with Lagos state’s First Lady, also spoke briefly and pledged the Lagos state government’s support to any organization working on the #BringBackOurGirls crusade.

Renowned life coach and psychotherapist, Lanre Olusola also spoke briefly at the event. He drew everyone’s attention to not just bringing back the girls physically but bringing them back emotionally. To this end, he stated that in collaboration with the Life Coaching Association of Nigeria; the Lanre Olusola Coaching Academy are positioning a team of psychologists, psychotherapists and coaches who will help these girls pro bono when they come out.

Lanre Olusola Speaking at the meeting

We need to not just bring back these girls physically but prepare to bring them back psychologically and emotionally too– Lanre Olusola 

A Borno state indigene, Khadija Kam-Salam representing the Kudirat Initiative for Democracy (KIND), spoke passionately about her troubled home state and begged for people to stop blaming the people and elders of Borno state that they are all victims too and suffering in ways more than the public could understand.

She informed the group that the situation in the North is much more serious than is known. “It is not just almajiris in these terrorist groups; there are learned people in there. Most of these youths in the North are into drugs and they need medical help and rehabilitation too” 
According to her, there are lots of boys and girls who are still in the book haram den, not just the Chibok girls. Boys have been slaughtered too. 

“In the North, we don’t know who is a Christian/Muslim; we are all bonded together against a common enemy” – Khadija Kam-Salam 

The organizers of the WIMBIZ town hall meeting implored everyone to keep talking about the situation and never relent on holding the government accountable for security and other issues plaguing Nigeria even after the Chibok issue is resolved.
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