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It was an electric and excitement-filled atmosphere at the Silverbird cinema, Abuja when the long awaited movie on the girl child ‘Searching’ was premiered in the capital city of Abuja.
The event, which witnessed the crème dela crème of the society, was packed full with people sitting on bare floor while others were waiting to catch a glimpse of the long awaited movie.
The tearful Josephine Anumbor, who doubles as the movie producer, presenter and child activist whose passion for the well-being of young people has distinguished her said she couldn’t hide her joy as she was dumbfounded throughout the screening of the movie. She explained that anyone who watches the movie will see how bad it is.
‘Excited, people sat on the floor, while others stood. This prompted the Silverbird management requesting to open another hall for us. It was really amazing. We wanted to show the rapist themselves how animalistic they are. Now if we wanted to provide answers to all of the questions, we will probably have 10 parts to the movie. What we succeeded in doing is to show how bad it really is. Now if anyone who is involved in raping women sees this movie, I’m sure he will not want to continue with the act.” She explained adding that ‘when I was called to speak, I became very emotional. All what I had been dreaming and imagining on how to tell the story became a reality on that day. I almost broke down in tears. I thank all who graced the premiere like the AGN Abuja were well represented. My traditional ruler was there and said he was close to tears and it calls for a moment of soul searching.’ She explained.
Also speaking, the wife of the President, Mrs Aisha Buhari, represented by Mrs Toyin Saraki, said she has repeatedly expressed concern about the plight of the Girl-Child in Nigeria which made her find the theme of the movie important, particularly significant and timely considering that this year’s United Nations 16 Days of Activism started with the marking of the 2015 International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and girls.
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According to her, “It is now 591 days, well-over a year, since our nation has called for the return of the 200 girls kidnapped from their school in Chibok, Nigeria. Their kidnapping and the continued assault against the rights of young children to education by Boko Haram is part of a wider conversation that we must continue to have in Nigeria and all over the world. Securing the release of every girl kidnapped by Boko Haram is the expected step, but we must return the focus to securing our schools and protecting the right to a safe, quality education for all of our children. This will ensure that the horrors of Chibok never happen again.” She said.
She also stressed that in an effort to protect the girl-child, everyone must also change the cultural perceptions that prevent their rise which is why movies like Searching are crucial in changing perceptions; drawing on soft power – the power of culture – is invaluable.
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