The news abroad that someone is kidnapped or killed is no longer a news, or newsworthy which makes a headline attractive. As there is no single day goes by without having a knowledge of numerous people are kidnapped, either in their places of work or even in their respective homes, in the northern part of Nigeria. No one is safe, you can be kidnapped, killed or abducted in everywhere you are, no need to en route to a remote areas now in the North, especially in katsina, zamfara or kaduna state, before you can fall in the trap of the bogeymen of fulani militiamen.
The menace of armed banditry in the North caused stagnation not only to the economy of the North but also on the educational sector in the north. Where almost, if not all, science boarding secondary schools in the North are substantially closed for the incessant attacks of bogeymen, Fulani attackers on schools in the said region. The morons bandit attackers, without any doubt, have won against Nigerian government and it’s security operatives. For they have caused the closure of numerous schools forcefully unless those in kaduna state as the governor, Nasiru El- rufa’i, said firmly he wouldn’t close any schools for the afraid of fulani militiamen.
Recall that, the first mass abduction of students take place in Kankara, katsina state, in government science secondary Kankara in the evening of 11 December, 2020 where over 300 students were abducted and later released on negotiation with the bandits. We had prayed and hope then that it is/was the first and last of the abduction of students in their schools. But the so-called leaders in the North didn’t not learned any lesson from Kankara abduction and how to prevent the reoccurrence of the example of what transpired in kankara. The another horrible abduction news came to the media, few months after the release of Kankara students, on 11 February, 2021 that 42 people were kidnapped, a pupil was killed out of the 27 kidnapped students in science secondary school kagara, Niger state and 12 relatives of the students were abducted. It did not stop there, the another mass abduction of student, whom the victims were almost female, came to take place in Jangebe, zamfara state, where attackers swooped government girls science secondary, a boarding school, for which 279 female students abducted. The holding of schoolchildren hostage becomes fairly common in the North, as there is no the end of it in sight.
Nevertheless, the people in authority did not see the gravity of the abduction of students in their schools, as something to heed maximum attention to, because if they had been swift into decisive action when it firstly happened Kankara students, we would have not known the recent abduction of the 39 students in kaduna state. Our leaders have failed to dispense a security even in our schools. What they can only do is to resort to the closure of our science boarding secondary schools. Their primary responsibility to secure the lives of the citizens has since became history, they have left the citizens with the fate of kidnapping for gaining ransom in their hands. Where is the onus on them of securing the country, for which they have voted to the helm of affairs of the country?
North had already been left far behind in terms of education by ten folds, if you compare it to the south, their counterpart, and now our schools were closed for the armed banditry, it starts on pastoralists in the remote villages, and now it increasingly becomes like a fire on the mountain which if not decisive action is not taken, it will consume everyone in the North. Of course, everyone!
All the closed schools are at the heart of producing- medical doctors, engineers, pharmacists and whatnot, but now they are closed, have we ever think of the problems we are enmeshing into and the consequences for the closure of these schools, which can take us more than decade ahead to recover? Yet we have not noticed this salient cog in the wheel of northern education.The future of northern education is bleak!
We are all consciences-striken for we did not yet twig to the thumping problems that we are enmeshing into, which will force ourselves to root out the people who are causing this menace to our region, and fish out those who are behind all these evils attacks that are bedeviling our educational sector, and make our thousands of our people living in IDP camps, make countless of women become widow, orphaned our children and among others. We should therefore understand as saying goes by that the ” collapse of the education is the collapse of the nation” and north can never be an exception. All our hands must be on deck, lest we should all consume in this roaring fire.
Umar Babangida, writes from the faculty of communication, Bayero University, Kano.