The women carried placards with inscriptions `Freedom of the girls is all we want’, `Bring back the abducted girls’, `God please save our innocent girls’, `What is our World turning into’ and `Federal Government, please save our daughters’.
The women drawn from churches, professional associations and non-governmental organizations, dressed in red attires signifying that their hearts were bleeding.
After their prayers at the Micheal Okpara Square, Enugu, the women, singing solemn songs and crying, marched to the state house of assembly where they presented their grievances to the lawmakers.
In her speech, the leader of the group, Dr Kate Ezeofor, said they were shocked, worried and concerned about the abduction of the girls since April 14.
“We pray God to intervene. We are calling on the abductors not to harm the innocent girls and return them safely to their parents.
“Women and girls have rights to life. To the parents, pray, we are also praying. Have courage for God will see us through,’’ she said.
Ezeofor urged the federal, state and local governments and the security agencies to beef up security in the whole country.
The wife of a former vice-president, Mrs Beatrice Ekwueme, who led the prayer session, called for God’s urgent intervention.
Responding, the Speaker of the assembly, Mr Eugene Odo, said that as lawmakers, they shared in the grief for the abducted girls.
Odo called on the women to advise the parents of the abducted girls to cooperate with security agencies and disclose their particulars to enable Nigerians to join in the search for them.
“It will be difficult to look for somebody you cannot identify. While the security agents are doing their best to rescue them, as lay men, we can take their names to respective altars and pray for them.
“ I am sure that our Lord Jesus Christ will answer us,’’ he said.
He noted that security issues had gone beyond security agents alone and called on all Nigerians to constitute neighbourhood watch groups.
The speaker commended the women for the peaceful conduct of the rally, saying that it symbolised motherhood, patriotism and love for the country.
“ It is a symbol that Nigeria is united and we pray that this will be the last time Nigeria will experience this type of ugly situation.
“The Nigerian entity will remain together, those who kill with the sword will die by the sword,’’ he said. (NAN)