Islamiyya students spend 2 months with bandits
As the parents of 136 students abducted from Salihu Tanko Islamiyya School in Tegina, Niger, struggle to raise 3 million naira to buy the six motorcycles requested by the kidnappers, the children have now completed two months. of captivity.
The students were abducted on May 30, 2021 and have been in the bandit lair ever since, even after their captors collected 55 million naira in ransom.
Last week, the bandits demanded a shortfall of 4.6 million naira on the last ransom of 30 million naira paid and refused to release the children, demanding payment of the shortfall in addition to the provision of six Honda motorcycles before they could be released.
LEADERSHIP Friday said yesterday that the bandits may have changed ground on the shortfall but insisted on providing the motorcycles.
It was learned that the bandits’ insistence on the supply of motorcycles was based on the recent operational successes of security guards in arresting some of their members while trying to buy their main means of transportation in the forest on the Free market.
Therefore, the bandits, it has been learned, devised ways to add motorcycles as a key demand for their captives’ relationships.
A source close to the parents of the kidnapped students in Tegina said parents were moved by the image of the squalid conditions of their children painted by the ransom courier, Kassimu Daragana Tegina, who was kidnapped and then released by the bandits.
The results revealed that the parents began to mobilize around 3 million Naira to buy the six Honda motorcycles, each costing 490,000 Naira in the Minna market.
Attempt to get school principal Alhassan Garba Abubakar failed, but a parent confirmed to LEADERSHIP on Friday that some of them have started contacting connections and supporters to raise money for the purchase. motorcycles, in the hope that the motorcycles will lead to the release of the students as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, the Niger state government has revealed that 31 of the state’s 56 boarding schools are not fully operational due to bandit attacks while 10 are completely closed.
State Education Commissioner Hajiya Hannatu Jibrin Salihu revealed this yesterday during the press conference held after the State Executive Council meeting in Minna.
She reiterated that with the closures, only 25 boarding schools are still operational in the state, adding that 10 of the 31 schools have been completely closed.
âWe have 56 boarding schools in Niger State. We had to close 10 residential schools and remove some. Those that have been completely closed are those in high-risk areas, âshe said, adding that the decision was based on the risk assessment by state security agencies.
“There are also plans to review the risk assessment and decide whether some schools will reopen,” she said.
In view of the development of the situation, the commissioner revealed that the students of SS3, who must take the examination of the secondary school certificate (SSCE) in the schools concerned, had been invited to go to alternative schools. to take their final exams.