Kebbi school bandits gave notice of attack, says lawmaker

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Despite early warning signs, security agencies failed to stop kidnappers from raiding the Federal Government College,  Birni-Yauri. The  lawmaker from Ngaski/ Shanga/ Yauri in the the House of Representatives, Tanko Sununu, is disturbed that the security agencies could not stop the attack on the school despite prior notice by the bandits .

He alleged yesterday that the bandits served notice of their intention to strike, yet those who were supposed to deal with the situation took no proactive measure to make the attack impossible.

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Speaking on Channels Television on Friday, Sununu said: “What really happened is that about two weeks ago, we had an episode when bandits residing within parts of the areas bordering Zamfara, Niger, and Kebbi came up through one of the villages in my constituency.

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“They killed a policeman and found their way until they reached Ibeto area where we have a quarry, killed some security men and kidnapped some of the foreign workers in the quarry and left.

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“Ten days later, they came back to the same area and entered into my constituency bordering some villages, and they had more than a seven-hour field operation, going from house to house, room to room, collecting money, phones, cows, and any machine they deemed useful for their operations, and they left a message behind that they would soon be back.

“To fulfill their promise yesterday, we had intelligence that they were on their way coming. “Around 10.30 in the morning, they reached their final destination – the Federal Government College, Birnin-Yauri.”

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Sununu said although the bandits were initially resisted by the Mobile Police and Police Counter-Terrorism Unit stationed at the school, the kidnappers overpowered the security operatives due to their large number.

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They eventually killed one of the policemen and gained access into the school, abducting an unspecified number of students and five teachers.

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He explained that it was difficult to ascertain the exact number of students abducted as parents from nearby villages and towns raced to the school to take their children away immediately after the incident.

He added: “Last night, I had a discussion with the Field Commander of Operation Hadarin Daji who said that they have succeeded in entering into the den of the kidnappers, and I think this is a major success because the security agencies are now taking the fight to the base of the kidnappers.

“I was also told that over 800 cattle that were rustled some days back have been recovered, and as of now, the military has combed the area where we are expecting that the students are with the bandits. They have also succeeded in creating many casualties on the part of the bandits.”

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