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Max Foster: Genevieve Nnaji is an actress, model and singer who has been raising awareness on the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. She told me they won’t stop till the missing girls are found. Take a listen.
Genevieve Nnaji: Everyone is involved. We are all mothers, we are all humans and these are young girls that have been taken into captivity and uh…. we just felt that as.. some of us who have a bigger face and more recognizable in terms of being celebrities and having a large fan base, we thought it’s our responsibility to help shed light and bring the fight to the forefront and stop this inhumane act.
MF: There’s been some criticism of the authorities in Nigeria that they were slow to react to this. What’s your reading into that?
GN: Um, for me I think it would be unfair to say our government was slow to react because no one knew whether they reacted or not. The thing is we weren’t told, that’s the problem, we didn’t know if they were aware of the situation or not. So, the major problem people are having is that lack of communication between the government and the people. We just wanted them to, at least, react to us. And make it aware to our knowledge that they know what was going on, we knew there was a problem at hand, its just that lack of communication.
MF: Has it improved now?
GN: Well, it has improved a whole lot, Now we can see things being put in place, now we can see the efforts being made and again, that will be credited to the noise that has been made, towards the campaigning that’s been made around the world, you know, the global community having an interest in this. So, we are grateful for all the attention. What it has done is create hope in a situation that seemed hopeless in the beginning.
MF: What do you make of other countries offering military support of various forms. Is that something that you welcome or would you rather that the Nigerian authority deal with it themselves?
GN: This has been going on way too long and um…. there’s no shame in asking for help and in taking it. The truth is, terrorism is not a country’s, it’s not our problem, it’s not a continent problem, it’s a global issue and if everyone can come together and help fight it at every point, at any part of the world, as long as we act as one again. This is a breach of human rights, it’s something that should concern each and everyone. So, it’s welcome.
MF: How has this affected Nigeria as a nation?
GN: I think this situation is becoming a bit too close to home and this has nothing to do with gender, religion or whatever. This is a human right problem and we are all human and what is going on is very, you know, inhumane if you ask me. And what it has done now is given us that confidence to know that our voices are loud enough to heard all around the world and we won’t stop.