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Market Digest Nigeria


Boko Haram: Shekau opens up on why they kidnapped Katsina school children

The leader of the Boko Haram sect, Abubakar Shekau, says his insurgents kidnapped over 300 students of the Government Science Secondary School in Kankara local government area of Katsina State to discourage Western education in Nigeria, as well as to promote Islam.

In an audio message he posted on Sound Cloud on Tuesday, December 15, Shekau said the “government was not teaching the pupils what Allah and his Holy Prophet Muhammed commanded,” and they will continue to abduct students in different schools to show their condemnation of Western education.

Shekau added that “un-Islamic practices such as Western education” in the country must be abolished as that has been one of the cardinal campaigns against the Nigerian government. “What happened in Katsina was done to promote Islam and discourage un-Islamic practices as Western education is not the type of education permitted by Allah and his Holy Prophet Muhammed,” the terrorist leader said in the audio message.

Continuing, he said: “The government is promoting Western education and they are also not teaching what Allah and his Holy Prophet commanded. They are rather destroying Islam. It may be subtle, but Allah, the Lord of the skies and earth, knows whatever is hidden. May Allah promote Islam. May we die as Muslims. In a nutshell, we are behind what happened in Katsina.”

On Friday, December 11, gunmen had stormed the Government Science Secondary School in Kankara local government area of Katsina State on motorcycles, shooting sporadically and abducted the students in their hostels.

Though there have been conflicting figures in respect of the actual number of students taken away by the kidnappers, the state Governor, Aminu Bello Masari said about 333 students were kidnapped, but the Presidency through Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, countered the number, insisting that only 10 students were abducted.

Shehu said he relied on the testimony of a student who had escaped from the bandits and had been debriefed by the military, saying only 10 students were abducted. However, on Monday, December 14, during a visit to Buhari in his Daura home, Masari said the kidnappers had contacted the government and negotiations had begun with a view to getting the students released. He also assured parents of the students that his government would do every necessary thing to ensure the release of all abducted students.

The governor, who could not control his emotions, broke down in tears while begging residents of the community to be patient and show understanding with the government. It was also gathered that two of the students had been killed by their abductors. The dreaded insurgents had also laid claims to such abductions in of Yobe and Borno States when students were either abducted or killed on several occasions.

In April 2014, about 276 students of Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, Borno State, who were preparing for their final examinations, were kidnapped by the insurgents. Till date, many of them have not been found. On February 19, 2018, 110 schoolgirls aged between 11–19, were kidnapped by the Boko Haram terrorist group from the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, located in Bulabulin, Yunusari local government area of Yobe State.

Five of the girls reportedly died on the same day of their kidnapping while others were released in March 2018 except Leah Sharibu who was said to have been held by the abductors for refusing to renounce Christianity.

Source: Ripples Nigeria


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