Wiregrass Family Pleading for Child to be Returned from West Africa

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Betty and James Johnson sift through pictures of their granddaughter Maayimuna N'diaye.

They haven't seen the 5 year old since December 27th 2011.

Her father Ibrahim N'diye took her to his homeland of Mali, West Africa, nearly six thousand miles from her home in Morehead Kentucky during what was supposed to be a custodial visit during Christmas.

The maternal grandparents, who live in Ozark, explained how they felt when they learned Maayimuna had been abducted.

"It was absolute horror, because we didn't have any indication that it was going to happen, “says Betty Johnson, grandmother of Maayimuna N'diaye

Muna's mother says she knew something had happened to her daughter before she was told.

"I knew before I heard, I just had the feeling when I dropped her off, on Christmas day to her father, the way that he behaved, you know, if just knew that he was going to take her. My mouth went dry, for the moment, it's what you call a surreal moment, I almost couldn't believe that it was happening, except that I knew he was going to do it," says Dr. Noelle Hunter, Muna’s mother.

It's a battle that's been brewing since the couple divorced.
But what's made the process so complicated is the fact that Muna is in another country.

"The main question that people ask me, is why can't you go get her, the simplest answer to that is, that he is in a sovereign country, and wit her and the united states, can not in theory tell another country what to do, with its citizen," says Dr. Noelle Hunter, Muna’s mother.

And after speaking to several congressional leaders and staging a protest outside Mali embassy, hunter says her latest option is to appeal to the highest executive in the country.

"I’m their constituent, and so I have been to Washington four times, to lobby, I have been in their offices encouraging them to help the u-s rule of law be followed here."

She's started an online petition to put her issue on the white house's agenda.
An issue that she and her family is hopeful will be resolved soon.

"We are beginning to see that this coming to an end, but in the mean time it's very very sad," says Betty Johnson, grandmother of Maayimuna N'diaye

If you like to sign the petition, click the link below.

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