Disturbed over the rising cases of abductions of students and teachers in schools, stakeholders in the education sector, parents, relevant agencies and security operatives have begun intense brainstorming on measures that would bring an end to the menace of kidnappings in the country.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Arc. Sonny Echono who made this known on Tuesday in Abuja at the end of a monitoring exercise of the National Business and Technical Examination Board (NABTEB) examinations, noted that the operations of the bandits at Federal Government College, Birnin Yauri, Kebbi State was an eye opener to better ways students and schools would be better protected.
According to him, the bandits had capitalised on the diversion of security operatives to the visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to Maiduguri, Borno state, to carry out a successful abduction of the students.
Echono, who stressed the importance of not yielding to bandits’ demands as a way of deterring criminal elements from embarking on such ventures, maintained that the government was not resting on its oars in ensuring abductions became a thing of the past.
He said: “We are dealing with a developing situation with our Federal Government College in Birnin Yauri, Kebbi State. We are monitoring the developments there but on a whole, measures are being taken.
“We are having multiple interest groups coming together; parents, local vigilante, community groups, the police, the other security agencies.
“We have different layers of security to ensure that we re-enforced first security, we emplace a communication system where information can be shared very quickly, and we will also have a rapid response mechanism. We have learnt a lot from what happened at Birnin Yauri in Kebbi State.
“We are positive if we really get a hand on this to ensure the bandits do not benefit from any exercise of that they do, I believe that with time we will be able to wipe this out of our systems and our schools will be safe and we will keep it safe for our students to learn and for teachers to be able to teach them.”