By Salim Yunusa
About 70 students and four teachers of the Federal Government College, Birnin Yauri, have been kidnapped by bandits in Birnin Kebbi.
SAHELIAN TIMES had exclusively reported that bandits stormed the Federal Government College Yauriat around 10:30pm.
An eyewitness said that the bandits, who were about 100 in number, were shooting and displayed guns, while two students got injured, and a police officer was killed.
He expressed dismay over the negligence of the principal, adding that the information was given that the bandits were around the school for more than a week, but he failed to take any action
The State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Nafiu Abubakar, in a statement, made available to newsmen in Birnin Kebbi, said a team of police operatives was in hot pursuit of bandits.
The team, he said, comprising operatives from the Police Mobile Force, Anti-kidnapping and Counter-terrorism units were combing nearby forests, routes and suspected hideouts of the criminals.
While condemning the attack, which resulted in the death of one policeman and gunshot injury to one of the students, the Kebbi State Commissioner of Police, CP Adeleke Adeyinka, assured parents and guardians of students that the Command was following credible leads and intensifying efforts to track the assailants and rescue the students and teachers.
Following the attack, three teachers and yet to be ascertained a number of students are still missing.
The commissioner of police appealed to residents to assist the police with prompt information that would assist in apprehending the criminals.
He stated that the Command would do everything within its power to ensure that the abducted persons are safely reunited with their families and perpetrators brought to book.
Meanwhile, a member of the House of Representatives, and Chairman, Committee on Health Services, Tanko Sunun, has decried killings in some parts of his constituency and abductions
The lawmaker, representing Yauri/Shanga/Ngaski Federal Constituency of the state, called on the Federal Government to urgently deploy security forces to the affected areas to forestall another attack by the bandits, who, he said, operated for about four hours in the latest attack.
He said: “The situation in my constituency, the level of insecurity, is worrisome. Recently, the southern part of Kebbi has been under attacks by bandits. Not long ago, 154 people lost their lives in a boat accident. Only 95 corpses could be accounted for,” adding that this had been followed by bandits’ attacks, which had left several people dead, and hundreds displaced, the latest being the abduction of teachers and students of the school.
“The invasion of the school came a week after a similar attack by bandits, numbering over 250 wielding AK-47 riffles, shooting sporadically and robbing members of the communities of their valuables, including money, phones and motorcycles.
“These same bandits wrote a letter to the community that they are coming back, which they did by the second time which saw them attacking the secondary school,” the lawmaker said, noting that he is drawing the attention of the Federal Government and the security agencies to come to the aid of the affected communities.”