Not long after recognizing the two year anniversary of the global banner — #BringBackOurGirls — which was summoned in the hopes of recovering the Chibok schoolgirls that were mercilessly abducted by Boko Haram— a miracle happens.
A girl randomly stumbles out of the dense darkness — carrying a baby — supported by a man who may or may not be the father.
The Nigerian army claims victory.
A spokesperson readily issues a statement confirming the rescue as well as her name, age and her weighty props.
It doesn’t take long for Amina Ali’s doctored emancipation to permeate the web as media outlets devour the unfathomable.
One of the missing girls has been accounted for!
We only have 218 more to go.
Oh. Wait. Make that 217. Incredibly — another Chibok girl has just been identified.
But the details of that operation haven’t been divulged yet.
While we wait to hear how that happened — we also need more color around how the girl before her managed to evade her betrayers.
If something is too good to be true — it most likely is.
The photo op at the presidential palace in Abuja — the welcome and celebration fit for a hero. The headlines that promptly evacuate Nigeria’s status from a nation of dimwits to governmental lottery.
The suddenness of things that seamlessly amount to nothing at all.
We are not celebrating the return of Amina and her comrade. We are gawking at the announcement of what doesn’t quite add up.
I dare you to read all or one of what has been written about Nigeria’s swiftly connived turn of events.
Examine the works of art that pencil in testimonies from villagers turned vigilantes. From army recruits turned commanders.
From reporters who are desperate to sell the notion that overnight — a country that can barely keep its lights on for 24 hours — somehow manages to ransack the Sambisa forest in the hopes of bringing one or two of the missing girls home.
I’m sorry. My bad. That’s my version.
The real story is that she was found wandering around with her baby and a man, and then by accident, they run into a group of special forces attached to the Nigerian army.
So, I guess that means they weren’t really rescued.
It’s not like they were trapped and then after combing the area — an army of renegades happened upon them.
The girl, a baby and some guy — ran into forces of nature — and their fate changed forever?
Here’s the thing. Everything we’ve internalized this week has been a shameful erection of propaganda and ruff-age tossed into a very expensive blender.
The resulting broth adds up to all the reasons why the missing girls are even more screwed and why the two heroines are faker than fake.
Or maybe not.
I don’t know. Do you? Does anybody?
That’s the point. Nobody really knows what the hell is going on.
We’re all grasping for anything that will reignite the banished hashtag and restore glory to mankind.
We want to believe that somehow a girl and another girl have beat the odds by discovering an escape route that led them right into the welcoming arms of a vigilante group on standby.
Expertly stationed in the event that this very event would unfold.
Bullshit. I say that word a lot but this time — I mean it.
President Muhammadu Buhari has staged a coup that defeats all the ones I endured in the eighties.
He understands the power in sexing the media until they yell for more.
He’s also tired of being shamed and ridiculed for failing to lead his men in uniform into the symbolic validation that only a global announcement can provide.
He got his wish today. But at what cost?
Amina Ali, and her baby and supposed baby’s father — plus her shadowed successor are sadly pawns in a high stakes game of — What Do We Have To Lose?
The forest is real but the participants are doubtful.
Many girls and boys have been displaced by the irate tendencies of Boko Haram.
This proves that we can never verify whether or not these designated girls are actually natives of Chibok — or indeed amongst the students that were removed from their dormitories that fateful night.
We have to contend with what the Federal Government of Nigeria officially bequeaths us — and as a weathered insider — I can tell you with absolute resolution that you’ve been duped.
No matter how much we spin the information or pepper the stew that refuses to yield to taste — the jarring realization remains the same.
We ain’t got nothing, yet. And we never will.