Amnesty International AI, has alleged that the Nigerian military was warned of an impending attack on Dapchi community by Boko Haram terrorists, hours before the February 19th abduction of 110 schoolgirls.
The students — the youngest of whom is aged just 10 — were seized from the town of Dapchi, Yobe state, on February 19 in virtually identical circumstances to those in Chibok in 2014.
In the report released by Amnesty’s Nigeria director, Osa Ojigho, Amnesty said that between 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm on the day of the abduction of the Dapchi school girls, at least five calls were made to tell the security services that Islamist fighters were in the Dapchi area.
Residents of the community had spotted about 50 members of the Islamic State group affiliate in a convoy of nine vehicles in Futchimiram, about 30 kilometres (19 miles) from Dapchi, then at Gumsa. In Gumsa, where Boko Haram stayed until about 5:00 pm, residents phoned ahead to Dapchi to warn them. The convoy arrived at about 6:30 pm and left about 90 minutes later.
Amnesty, whose researchers spoke to about 23 people and three security officials, said the army command in Geidam had told callers they were aware of the situation and were monitoring.
No lessons appear to have been learned” from Chibok and called for an immediate probe into what she called “inexcusable security lapses. The government’s failure in this incident must be investigated and the findings made public — and it is absolutely crucial that any investigation focuses on the root causes. Why were insufficient troops available? Why was it decided to withdraw troops? What measures have the government taken to protect schools in northeast Nigeria? And what procedures are supposed to be followed in response to an attempted abduction?”Amnesty’s Nigeria director Osa Ojigho said
People in Dapchi have previously said troops were withdrawn from the town earlier this year, leaving only a few police officers. The nearest military detachment was an hour away.
The Dapchi abduction has thrown into doubt repeated claims by the government and the military that that it had degraded Boko Haram.