*Niger shuts boarding schools
President Muhammadu Buhari has called on all security agencies to ensure the freedom of all the students who were kidnap in Niger State on Tuesday night.
A yet to be specified number of students and staff of Government Science College, Kagara, Niger State, have ben abducted.
President Buhari directed the armed forces and police to ensure the immediate and safe return of all the captives. The directive was contained in a statement by his spokesperson, Garba Shehu.
The armed men who abducted the teachers and students were said to have been dressed in army uniforms.
Shehu’s statement reads:
“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 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.”
In the meantime, Niger state government has shut down boarding schools in four local government areas of the state.
This is as a result of the abduction of school children at the Government Science College (GSC), Kagara.
The Governor of the State, Sani Bello, gave the order at a press conference.
The affected local governments are Rafi, Munya, Mariga and Shiroro.
The governor called for an emergency meeting with security heads in the state.
The meeting is to strategise on ways to end kidnapping and killings in the state. He called for calm from parents and relatives of the abducted schoolchildren.
He assured them that “proactive action is underway” to arrest the situation.
Boarding schools in the north have been targets of attacks and abductions, with previous cases reported in Chibok in Borno state, Dapchi in Yobe State and Kankara in Katsina State.
Boko Haram militants have in the past attacked and killed scores of students at a government school in Buni Yani, Yobe State.