Tragedy struck Nigeria in the early hours of Friday, 26 February, 2021 as gunmen stormed the Jangbei Government Girls Secondary School in the Tarata Mafala Local Government Area in Zamfara State, and carted three-hundred and seventeen (317) school girls.
The State Public Relations Officer, Shehu Mohammed, finally confirms the incident on Friday, in a statement.
According to him, the police and the military have launched a conjoined search and rescue operation in move to rescue the 317 students who were loaded away by gun-wielding bandits.
He further added, that the gunmen stormed the school around 1 am and loaded the girls into their buses.
In the statement: “The Commissioner of Police, Abutu Yaro; the Force Commander Operations Hadarin Daji, Major General Aminu Bande; Brigade Commander, 1 Brigade, Nigeria Army Gusau and other state government officials led a heavily armed team to Jangebe to complement the ongoing rescue operation in the locations where the students were believed to be taken to.
“The CP, while interfacing with the principal of the school and the parents, appealed to them to be calm as joint efforts of the police and other security agencies will lead to the successful rescue of the students.”
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As previously reported by GhanaTalksRadio, it is said that the gunmen stormed the school around 1 am and packed the girls into their buses.
A grieving parent, Seidu Muhammadu who spoke to reporters in confirmation of the incident, revealed that his two daughters (Mansura and Sakina) were part of the kidnapped girls.
Reports say that the bandits arrived with buses and motorcycles, which were used to take the pupils away.
A source said the bandits, some whom appeared like security agents, were in the school for a long time without being challenged by any security outfit.
This incident is coming just one week after gunmen attacked a government high school in Kagara, Niger State, and kidnapped 47 students, teachers and workers. As of the time of filing this report, they have not been rescued.
On December 11, 2020, 344 secondary schoolboys were also abducted from Kankara in Katsina, the home state of President Muhammadu Buhari, while he was there.
Hundreds of schoolgirls were also kidnapped in Chibok in 2014 by Boko Haram, some of whom have not been released till date.
In February 2018, 110 schoolgirls were also abducted by Boko Haram from the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State. Five died in the process while others were later released, except Leah Sharibu, a Christian girl who refused to renounce her faith.