Abuja (AFP) – The Nigerian authorities on Sunday confirmed that 110 women had been lacking after a Boko Haram faculty assault within the northeast, following days of silence on the kids’s destiny.
“The Federal Authorities has confirmed that 110 college students of the Authorities Science and Technical Faculty in Dapchi, Yobe State, are to date unaccounted for, after insurgents believed to be from a faction of Boko Haram invaded their faculty on Monday”, the data ministry mentioned in an announcement.
The assertion got here after authorities had been unable to account for 110 of the college’s 906 college students, the ministry mentioned.
The kidnapping has raised questions concerning the army’s repeated claims that the Islamist militants are on the verge of defeat, after almost 9 years of bitter combating.
It has additionally revived reminiscences of the 2014 mass abduction of greater than 200 schoolgirls from Chibok that shook the world.
On Monday evening, terrified pupils fled the boarding faculty evening when closely armed fighters in army fatigues and turbans stormed the city, shouting “Allahu Akbar” (“God is best”).
The authorities initially denied that any pupil had been kidnapped.
On Friday, President Muhammadu Buhari apologised to the ladies’ households, saying: “This can be a nationwide catastrophe. We’re sorry that this might have occurred.”
– Concentrating on schooling –
Former army ruler Buhari was elected in 2015 on a promise to defeat Boko Haram, after the jihadists grew in energy beneath his predecessor, Goodluck Jonathan.
Jonathan was lambasted for his tardy response to the Chibok abduction, which noticed 276 women from the city in Borno state taken at the hours of darkness.
In his first expanded feedback on Dapchi, Buhari mentioned: “This can be a nationwide catastrophe. We’re sorry that this might have occurred.”
A instructor on the faculty, Amsani Alilawan, mentioned there have been troopers in Dapchi till final month however they had been then redeployed.
“One month again, they carry (take away) all troopers, they transferred them to a different aspect, they depart us with out safety,” he mentioned.
Enraged family members of the lacking women this week tried to encompass the convoy of the state mayor of Yobe, solely to be pushed again by the safety forces.
The kidnapping is the worst jihadist assault to have hit Nigeria since Buhari got here to energy.
Faculties, notably these with a secular curriculum, have been focused by Boko Haram, whose identify roughly interprets from Hausa as “Western schooling is forbidden”.
Boko Haram’s quest to determine a hardline Islamic state in northeast Nigeria has left a minimum of 20,000 lifeless and made greater than 2.6 million others homeless since 2009.
The jihadists have more and more turned to kidnapping for ransom as a option to finance their operations and win again key commanders in prisoner swaps with the Nigerian authorities.