On January 20, 2023, Daily Trust reported the kidnapping of six pupils at the LGEA Primary School, Alwaza, in Doma, the headquarters of Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State. In this report, Daily Trust on Sunday spoke to parents of the missing children who shared their burdens.
Parents of six pupils abducted from the Local Educated Authority Primary Alwaza in Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, have begged the state government and security agencies in the state to do everything within their powers to rescue the remaining four children from the hands of their abductors unhurt.
Daily Trust on Sunday had, last week, reported that gunmen invaded the school premises around 7.30am on Friday and abducted some pupils.
Sharing her grief in an interview with our correspondent, Mrs Blessing Emmanuel, mother of 7-year-old Success Emmanuel and 5-year-old Awazi Emmanuel, said she took her children to school around 7.30am and returned home to finish the rest of her domestic work, adding that shortly after, she heard a neighbour calling out her name. “She then informed me that some gunmen invaded my children’s school and abducted them.”
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Mrs Emmanuel said upon hearing the sad news, she fainted and hasn’t been able to eat since then.
She said: “I am confused. I can’t imagine that my children have been abducted from their school. The situation is too big for me to bear. I am finished. I am appealing to the state government and security agencies to please come to my aid and rescue my children. They are all I have and my future hope and I can’t do without them.”
Narrating his ordeal, Mr Baba Emmanuel, father of Success and Awazi Emmanuel, said that morning, he had instructed his wife to bath the children and take them to school, noting that while in his farm, he heard people crying that kidnappers invaded their community and abducted six children from the school.
He explained that upon hearing the sad news, he rushed to the school and unfortunately found out his children were among those kidnapped.
He said he learnt that the kidnappers came on three new motorcycles loaded with weapons and started shooting sporadically into the air, scaring people away, before they abducted the children to an unknown destination.
“They came into our community and nobody could identify them because they covered their faces with black masks.” He appealed to the state government and security agencies to come to their aid and help rescue the children.
Also speaking to our correspondent, Alhaji Yerima, father of 7-year-old Dominion Yerima, explained that he took his son to school that day and returned home but afterwards went to his farmland to clear some grasses, noting that few minutes later, he heard people shouting that gunmen had kidnapped six children from Alwaza Primary School in their community.
According to him, at first, he thought it was a joke, until he went to the school and discovered that his child was among the six children abducted by the gunmen.
“It was like a drama. This sort of calamity has never befallen our community. Oh my God, please protect my child for me and save those that were kidnapped,” he prayed.
“When do I see my son again? Alwaza community is becoming something else. God help us. What we have been hearing in other states has come to our community.”
“As I speak to you now, I am in pain. I pray that my son and the other children abducted return home safely. Right inside me, I feel bad and feel suicidal, ” Alhaji Yerima said amidst tears.
He noted that, “We need a police outpost in our community. I am appealing to the Nasarawa State government to deploy more security to our community. This will go a long way in protecting our children from bandits and kidnappers.”
He, however, urged the state government to renovate the primary school and fence it, saying the school, which was established in 1976 is located on the outskirts of the community and needs to be safeguarded as it’s the only primary school in their community.
On his part, Mr Oga Jacob, father of 7-year-old Success Oga, said he has three children but lost one some years back, and now one has been kidnapped by gunmen from the two left.
According to him, he has been traumatized over the abduction of his child, while asking, “Where do I start from here? Out of the three children, I am now left with just one.”
Mrs Christiana Alhaji, mother of a 4-year-old boy who was also kidnapped, said she has two boys – one in nursery school and the other in primary two. She narrated that her older son refused to go to school that day after he had his bath and only obliged after he was forced to go to school.
“He didn’t eat the food I prepared for him before he was kidnapped by gunmen. I never knew my son saw danger ahead which was why he didn’t want to go to school. If I had known, I wouldn’t have forced him to go to school that day.”
Still narrating her ordeal on how she got the news of her son’s kidnapping, she said, “I saw my mother crying and when I asked her, she told me that my son had been kidnapped from school by gunmen.”
Reacting to the ugly development, the Aren Alwaza community, Yohana Alex Atomi, told our correspondent that he was at home when he saw some pupils running from the school to the community, crying and shouting for help, saying that some gunmen entered their school on three motorcycles, heavily armed, and abducted six children from the school.”
The Aren Alwaza who spoke through the Ayuba Jattau, Sarkin Dawakin of Alwaza community, added that the kidnappers injured a four-year-old girl and abandoned her in the bush.
He disclosed that through the help of Alwaza vigilante groups, some youths and elders in the community who went after the kidnappers found the little girl who was rushed to an undisclosed hospital for treatment.
The Aren Alwaza added that the state deputy governor, Dr Emmanuel Akabe, alongside the state commissioner of police, Mr Baba Maiyaki, visited the scene of the unfortunate incident and promised to pay the medical bill of the injured 4-year-old girl.
“The girl, after receiving treatment for her injury, has been reunited with her parents,” he added.
However, a source who didn’t want his name in print, told our correspondent that 4 Special Forces Command, Doma Barracks, has since deployed its personnel to the bush and effort has been intensified to ensure that the remaining pupils are rescued unhurt.