Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Gunmen kidnap three teachers in Nigeria’s restive northwest

Gunmen on Monday seized three primary school teachers in the northwestern Nigerian state of Kaduna, the government said, in a region wracked by banditry and kidnapping.

The raid is the latest in a string of attacks on schools in Nigeria, coming just four days after 39 college students were kidnapped by a gang.

Kaduna’s home affairs commissioner Samuel Aruwan said in a statement three teachers were snatched from Rema Primary School in Birnin Gwari as pupils arrived for studies Monday morning.

He said the government “can confirm that three teachers, Rabiu Salisu, Umar Hassan, and Bala Adamu have been kidnapped.”

Aruwan said the pupils “took to their heels in the course of the commotion, as the bandits invaded the premises on motorcycles.”

He said two pupils who were initially missing had been found.

“No single pupil was kidnapped from the school. Other than the three teachers previously mentioned, no staff or pupil of the school is missing following the attack,” he added.

Aruwan had earlier said an unspecified number of pupils and teachers were abducted.

The total number of children enrolled at the school was not immediately known. Most primary pupils in Nigeria are aged between six and 11.

Gangs in northwest and central Nigeria, who are known locally as bandits, have recently turned their focus to mass kidnappings, seizing school students for ransom.

At least five mass kidnappings have occurred since December.

Gunmen abducted 39 students late Thursday from hostels on the outskirts of Kaduna city, the state capital.

On Monday, the authorities shut down their college and sent home 180 other students and staff who had been rescued.

“Yesterday, under the cover of the military, we brought all the students back to the school so they could pick all their personal belongings before we handed them over to their parents,” Abubakar Hassan, head of Kaduna’s State Emergency Agency (SEMA), told AFP.

“Parents have been asking for these students to be released to them, and they would have been released earlier but we needed to manage their trauma and get them to a certain level of comfort,” he added.

At the weekend, security forces thwarted a gang that had stormed a secondary school in Ikara, Aruwan said on Sunday. AFP

Comments