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#BringBackOurGirls Group Furious As Buhari’s Daughter Raise N3.5m with Its Name

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The BringBackOur Girls (BBOG) group is furious at the use of its brand name at a fundraising event organised by a non-governmental organisation owned by Hadiza Buhari-Bello, President Muhammadu Buhari’s daughter.

The event, organised by Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative, was held on Monday as part of an endowment fund for the Chibok girls with “Bringbackourgirls” inscribed boldly on the backdrop of the event.

But the BBOG group has disassociated itself from the event, which witnessed the donation of N3.5m by the Peace Corps of Nigeria, promising to issue a response through its lawyer, Femi Falana.

In a statement signed by its leaders, Oby Ezekwesili and Aisha Yesufu, the group said the organisers of the event were trying to smear its hard-earned name insisting that it was a self-funded movement, and not a money-making NGO.

“Following repeated enquiries from the media, we stumbled upon information of an event tagged ‘Official Inauguration and Signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Chibok Girls Endowment Project’ organised by the ‘Peace Corps of Nigeria’ and ‘Africa Support and Empowerment Initiative,’ with Hadiza Buhari-Bello,” the statement read.

“We are shocked, perplexed and completely dumbfounded to see the bold inscription of our hard-earned name, #BringBackOurGirls, on the event’s backdrop.

“We state categorically that we are not party to the said event and have absolutely no information of its origin. We urge the general public to disregard attempts at linking our movement to this highly suspicious event.

“After 902 days of painstaking advocacy, it is disheartening and unfortunate to suddenly see attempts, by external actors, to use it for selfish purposes. We have carefully built our reputation as a well-organised and disciplined global movement that is completely self-funded.

“The deliberate decision, to remain funded by sacrificial contributions of members for our very negligible needs, is the reason we are solely a Citizens’ Movement, and not an NGO. It will be highly injurious to allow it be dragged in the mud at this point.

“We therefore demand an immediate retraction and unreserved apology from the organisers.

“Together with our lawyers, Femi Falana & Co., we are considering a response to this attempt to smear our movement. We call on the general public and law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout for unscrupulous persons who may already be/are planning similar nefarious acts to deceive the local and international community.”

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