Parents Cheer Planned Return to School of 24 Chibok Girls in Nigeria

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The president's wife, according to a statement by her media aide, Adebisi Ajayi, spoke yesterday while meeting with the girls in Abuja.

On Saturday, 82 of the Chibok schoolgirls were released.

Galang said they don't yet know who has been released, "but we're very happy that many have been freed".

She said all the girls would resume the new academic session in September, including the recently released 82 Chibok girls, adding that they will undergo skill acquisition.

In April 2014, the girls were forced from their beds in a late-night raid by the militants at a government secondary school in Chibok, in the state of Borno, Northeast Nigeria.

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) - Nigeria's government is negotiating "seriously" for the release of more than 110 kidnapped Chibok schoolgirls still held by Boko Haram and will exchange more detained members of the extremist group for them if needed, an official said Thursday. "I am still hopeful that the rest of the abducted girls will also return safe and sound", she said.

"Boko Haram has inflicted unspeakable horror upon the children of Nigeria's north-east and neighbouring countries", said Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict Virginia Gamba.

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The wife of the president was accompanied at the occasion by Ministers of Information and Women Affairs, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and Sen.

The minister added that the recently released 82 girls would be reunited at another facility in the capital with 24 of their classmates who were released or found past year. She added that parents "are free to come and see them anytime" and that the girls are at the rehab centre "of their own free will, nobody is compelling them to be here".

Human rights groups have criticized the government for keeping them so long in the capital, far from their homes. Ms Alhassan said they travelled to Chibok for Christmas but upon their return to the capital said they were scared to go back to their community.

The group's leader, Abubakar Shekau, claimed in a video released after the kidnapping that the girls would be taken as wives and sold at market by Boko Haram.

The girls said they wanted to go back to school so a nine-month reintegration programme was designed for them, the minister said. We will never prevent them from seeing their daughters.

"Parents have been to visit them here".

Fifty-seven (57) of them escaped from captivity shortly after the kidnap, while being transported by the terrorists, leaving 219 girls missing.

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