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Zamfara’s Jangebe 279 schoolgirls’ abductors relocate to Niger State, abduct over 200 Tegina students

  • Governor Bello abandons State, jets out abroad

The bandit group which masterminded the abduction of 279 schoolgirls from Government Girls Secondary School, Jangebe, in Zamfara State on 26 February 2021 is behind the mass abduction of students from Tegina,, Rafi Local Government Area (LGA) in Niger State.

Sources said that the bandits group moved en masse to Niger State penultimate Saturday, led by its notorious leader called Na-Sanda.

He was said to have operated from Jangebe Forest in Zamfara’s Talata Mafara LGA for years though he is originally from Jaja, Zurmi LGA of the State.

According to the source, “they left with all their families in hundreds of motorcycles. They were about 500 in number and travelled in over 300 motorcycles.”

The bandits raided and abducted about 200 students and teachers from Salihu Tanko Islamic School, Tegina, just about a week after moving to Niger State, which has become the new epicentre of banditry in Nigeria.

In addition, an unspecified number of other people were abducted alongside the Islamiyya school children including a former Councilor in the area.

It is unclear, however, where the abductees are being held. There were reports of release of some children by the bandits who were not able to keep up with the pace of the trek into the bush.

Meanwhile, the Niger State Governor Abubakar Sani Bello, ignoring the anguish of the parents of the abducted students and the suffering of the victims of the kidnap, has traveled abroad.

With mounting oppositions and criticisms over the travel at a time his State is engulfed in banditry and lingering insecurity, Bello’s Chief Press Secretary, Mary Noel Berje, said her boss jetted out on a security mission and is expected back in the country “within the shortest period.”

The Niger State government has however said it is in pursuit of the bandits’ abductors and is putting measures to ensure safe release of the students.

State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Ahmed Mohammed Ketso, told journalists at Government House, Minna that “government is on the pursuit of the bandits and efforts are being put in place to identify the bandits. Although the number of the kidnapped school children is not fully ascertained, however, efforts by security agencies to secure their release have been intensified.”

He said there are many government schools in Tegina but due the incessant attack on schools, government has temporarily changed them to day schools and made sure every primary and secondary school has a security team to provide security.

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