Dec, 14th 2020 – Nigerian authorities are trying to rescue students abducted by armed men who raided their hostels. The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) condemned the assault on the school in Katsina, which is in the home state of President Mohamed Buhari.
National police spokesman Frank Mbas, said that additional operational and investigative assets to support the ongoing search and rescue operations in Kankara have been deployed.
He said, “additional operational and investigative assets to support the ongoing search and rescue operations in Kankara.”
Reports say that gunmen on motorcycles stormed the school late Friday and engaged the security forces in a fierce gun battle, forcing the students to flee and seek refuge in the surrounding bushes and forests. Visiting the school on Saturday, State governor Aminu Bello Masari said the soldiers are working to relocate and free the hostage.
He said, “Soldiers are currently in the bushes fighting the bandits. We will do all we can to ensure all the abducted children are reclaimed.”
He added that it is not clear how many students were in the hands of the bandits and how many managed to escape. Masari said, “The school has a population of 839 and so far, we are yet to account for 333 students. We are still counting because more are still coming out of the forest. We as a government we are yet to be contacted by any group or person responsible for the kidnap of the students.”
Since the attack, many secondary schools have been shut down. Meanwhile, parents are pleading with the school to help save the boys abducted by the gunmen.
UNICEF in a statement said that it, “condemns in the strongest possible terms this brutal attack and calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all children and their return to their families.“
The global children body said that it was deeply concerned about the acts of violence. “Attacks on schools are a violation of children’s rights. This is a grim reminder that abductions of children and widespread grave violations of children’s rights continue to take place in northern Nigeria.”
UNICEF has however commended the Nigerian for deploying security forces to rescue the children.