President Muhammadu Buhari has received reports of the brazen attack on Government Science College, Kagara, Rafi Local Government Area of Niger State, following which a yet to be ascertained number of staff and students have been abducted by gunmen.
Following these reports, the President, according to a statement by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media and Publicity), “has directed the Armed Forces and Police, to ensure immediate and safe return of all the captives. The President has also dispatched to Minna, Niger State a team of security chiefs to coordinate the rescue operation and meet with state officials, community leaders, as well as parents and staff of the College.
“President Buhari has assured of the support of his administration to the Armed Forces in their brave struggle against terrorism and banditry and urged them to do all that can be done to bring an end to this saga, and avoid such cowardly attacks on schools in the future.”
“Our prayers are with families of the victims of this attack,” said the President as he condemned as cowardly the attack on innocent school children.
Gov. Bello confirms abduction of 27 students, 15 other persons
By Aminu Garko/ Rita Iliya
Minna, Feb. 17, 2021
Meanwhile, Gov. Abubakar Sani-Bello of Niger on Wednesday confirmed the abduction of 27 students, three staff and 12 family members by gunmen at the Government Science College, Kagara, in Rafi Local Government Area of the state.
Bello made the confirmation at a news conference shortly after an emergency meeting with heads of security agencies in Minna on Wednesday.
NAN reports that the gunmen stormed the school on Wednesday at 2 a.m killing one student and kidnapping 27, three staff of the college and 12 members of families at the school.
The governor directed that all boarding schools in Shiroro, Rafi and Muyan be closed down with immediate effect until the situation improved.
“I call on all Nigerlites to condemn all forms of criminality in the state,” he said.
He called on the Federal Government to deploy all resources to secure the state, while the State Government was doing everything possible to ensure the safe return of the students and staff.
Bello also said that the State Government would not pay ransom to the suspected bandits in order to secure the release of their victims, but that it was ready to support any bandit who was ready to surrender their arms.
“When you negotiate and pay ransom to criminals, they will use the money to purchase more weapons,” he said.
NAN reports that Government Science College, Kagara, has a total of 650 students out of whom the 27 were abducted and one, Benjamin Doma, was killed by the hoodlums.
NAN recalls that 40 passengers travelling from Kontagora to Minna where abducted by suspected gunmen on Feb. 14.
However, 8 out of the 40 passengers abducted, had regained freedom, while the remaining are still in the hands of their abductors who are demanding ransom.
Abducted students will return safe – Bello
By Ahmed Garko
Minna, Feb. 17, 2021
The Niger State Government says it has taken concrete security measures to ensure safety in the state and safe return of the abducted 27 students of the Government Science College, Kagara.
The students, three staff and 12 families of the college in Rafi Local Government Area of the state were abducted in the early hours of Wednesday.
In a news conference in Minna on Wednesday, Gov. Yahaya Bello of the state, said that his administration had taken concrete security measures to ensure safe returned of the students.
Mrs. Mary Barje, Chief Press Secretary to Gov. Abubakar Bello told NAN in Minna: “As I speak, Gov. Bello is holding an emergency security meeting with heads of security agencies in the state to strategise and bring a halt to the wanton killings and the abductions’’.
She noted that the governor had called for calm from the parents as well as relatives of all those abducted.