Students have called for improved security in schools just as they commended the Nigerian government for the early rescue of school girls abducted at Government Science and Technical College, Dapchi about a month ago.
In separate statements sent to EduCeleb.com on Thursday, the students under the aigies of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and the Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN) also commiserated with the families of those reported to have died among the abductees.
Recall that 110 school girls were kidnapped by Boko Haram terrorists on 19th February and of them, 104 were released on Wednesday. 5 reportedly died and one is still in captivity. The MSSN described the release of the school girls as the “biggest relief of the moment”.
NANS spoke through its Public Relations Officer, Okereafor Bestman Opeyemi while the MSSN spoke through its Lagos State President, Saheed Ashafa.
While commending the government, the students also called for a beef up of security in schools to prevent a likely occurrence of such an unfortunate incident in any school.
NANS particularly called for the facilitation of the quick release of the remaining Chibok girls who were abducted since April, 2014 just as it commended the Inspector General of Police over the withdrawal of policemen behind non-government officials.
“The leadership of the over 40.1 million Nigerian Students under the auspices of National Association Of Nigerian Students (NANS) sincerely commend the proactive gesture of the Federal Government of Nigeria under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari which has led to rescue of the abducted Dapchi students.
“(This is) even as we are unhappy about the news of the few demised students. May there (sic) gentle souls rest in perfect peace even as we pray to God to grant the family of the deceased students the fortitude to bear the loss.
“We are equally calling on the presidency not to relent in its bid to rescue the remaining Chibok students,” Mr Opeyemi said.
The MSSN expressed worries that the incidents could spell doom for interest in literacy in Nigeria and challenged government to its responsibility in securing citizens. It added that attention should be paid to the medical and mental state of the released girls.
Dr Ashafa said, “We hail the return of the Dapchi Schoolgirls and rejoice with their parents for the biggest relief of the moment. We appeal that Nigerian girls should never again be abducted from their schools. This is because when incidences like this happen, government and organisations’ efforts to get more children in school is defeated.
“It sends a negative signal about education and parents/guardians will be scared that schools are insecure places for girls. The provision of a safe environment for education is very crucial and germane to the nation’s progress.”
The MSSN leader also condemned the perpetrators of the kidnap and other acts seen as threat to the acquisition of education.
“Situations, whereby students are exposed to various degrees of security threats, are unacceptable. Government at all levels must deploy quality resources to address the issue of security pitfalls in schools and our country as a whole,” he added.
The statement from NANS also recalls that the IGP heeded its call for the withdrawal of police personnel attached to some individuals in the country. “This shows that our views as major stakeholders in the country is been respected and and considered all aimed at nation Building.”
The students also challenged parents and teachers to brainstorm and harmonise strategies towards improving security in schools.
“NANS is however calling on the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) in all schools across the federation to come up with ideas and supports for the school management and government all aimed at intensifying security in schools and our great Nigerian Students, as security remains everyone’s business,” Mr Opeyemi concluded.