I used to be one of those “Twitter is only good for jokes” type of people until Monday April 28th, 2014. I remember that day soooooo vividly. It was my first time ever participating in “social media activism”. But as I reminisce, I’m not sure if I’m proud…or ashamed that I did.

But anyways…let’s begin to walk down memory lane shall we?

I want to assume that whoever is reading this is aware of the famous hashtag #BringBackOurGirls right? You know, the trending topic that started in Nigeria when on April 15th, over 200 girls from Chibok, Borno State were mysteriously “kidnapped” by the islamic extremist group Boko Haram? Well if you can answer yes, let’s move forward. If not, simply google “#BringBackOurGirls” and a plethora of articles will overeducate you on the issue.

On April 28th, I wake up one Monday morning and log onto twitter to see some of the people I follow RT-ing tweets of Nigerians in Abuja protesting about this event. Mind you, before that morning, I wasn’t even aware that any kidnapping had taken place. I begin to see more and more tweets which prompt me to start digging to find information on this issue and once I found information, boy oh boy! I was on a roll! I was so excited! Of course I was devastated at that the fact that 200+ girls were missing, but overly thrilled at the fact that Nigerians, the people who I always complain about being selfish, ethnocentric, and oblivious when it came to social issues, WERE PROTESTING! Actually stepping out of their homes to stop complaining over the dinner table, to carry signs and march about the government’s lack of response in finding these girls. Man, I was hype!

For the whole day, I was glued to twitter. Because the protests in Nigeria hadn’t reached the level of gaining international attention just yet, twitter was the main platform where I could get first hand accounts of the Abuja rally from. I was wasting all my battery life continuously refreshing my timeline during classes. It was a GREAT day to have a twitter account, my goodness.

By the next day, #BringBackOurGirls had become a twitter trending topic! You don’t understand how proud I was. Finally, Nigerians on twitter weren’t talking about relationships, or about jollof rice, or about how Nigerian girls/guys can’t do this or that. We were finally collectively talking about an issue that was happening in our country! Granted, us Nigerians in America weren’t getting adequate information from back home on this whole fiasco, but it didn’t matter. We were making noise! Positive noise! Noise that was causing people of other races and nationalities and ethnic backgrounds to get nosy and figure out what exactly was going on. Twitter was so beautiful that day. Even with all the negative Nancys and Debbie downers who were were complaining about how tweeting wasn’t going to bring these Chibok girls back, those of us who wouldn’t take no for answer kept on tweeting about the issue. We didn’t want this thing to die ya know?

That evening, my friend, Monisola Osibodu, tweets me and says that we should plan a protest in D.C for the issue. It was that tweet that made history for me. Within hours, myself and my friends had formulated a small committee of Nigerian college students (Temi Wellington, Jennifer Pearse, Monisola Osibodu, Theresa Bajulaiye, Ronke Oloyede, and myself) and began to plan a peace rally. By Wednesday, we had secured a Morgan State University professor and owner of the blog, Dr. Tosin Adegbola, who guided us through the planning of the rally. We had started planning the #BringBackOurGirls D.C rally on Wednesday and agreed that it would hold Saturday May 3rd, 2014.

Within 48 hours, we had contacted almost every major news source possible. I’m not sure if this is lame or not, but I was feeling pretty freaking cool talking with people from BBC news and people from major radio stations. I used to always wonder how regular people wound up on the news or how people would get interviews with CNN. Never once in my life did I think I would be working with my friends to be doing exactly that.

By Thursday, we had a flyer promoting the rally:


So viral, I think we may have gotten in trouble according to an article:

To read further: Log on to Jessica’s website via this link

Join The Exquisite VIPs
We Want To Send You Free Copies Of Exquisite Magazine Digital FREE For 3 Months

Sign Up to our Exclusive VIP list and have it delivered to your inbox for FREE

Invalid email address
(We promise you won't receive daily spammy sales from us)