Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has lamented the incessant abduction of students from schools, especially tertiary institutions, noting that such development should not be allowed to become a norm in Nigeria.
Nigeria has in recent months seen a surge in attacks on schools. The latest of such happened over the weekend when gunmen kidnaped an unspecified number of students at the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Benue State, a development Atiku described as “unacceptable.”
“This must not be allowed to become our new normal. It is time for us as a nation to face the reality that we have an emergency on our hands,” the PDP presidential candidate in 2019 tweeted in a statement on his official handle on Tuesday. “A catastrophe that must be decisively dealt with before it snowballs into an existential crisis.”
President Muhammadu Buhari had on several occasions reiterated his government’s commitment to tackling all forms of crime in the West African nation, calling on Nigerians to unite and fight insecurity.
“Banditry, kidnapping, and the politics of murders will be fought with all the resources available to our country,” he assured in a statement following the killing of three students abducted by assailants at the Greenfield University in Kaduna State.
‘Enough Is Enough’
Atiku is, however, not happy with the government’s handling of Nigeria’s security challenges, restating that no form of criminality should be condoned.
“We must stop treating these acts of criminality with kid gloves. Enough is enough! There must be the safety of lives and property in our citadels of learning,” he said.
“Without it, there would be a loss of confidence in the sector, which will result in low enrolment rates in a country that is amongst the highest statistically for out-of-school children.”
The Waziri Adamawa believes that punishing those who commit crimes will serve as a deterrent to others, but said when “criminals profit from their criminality, crime will increase.”
“Once these criminals have clarity on what awaits them should they toe such evils paths, then their audacity to commit evil will be weakened, and gradually, this ugly chapter in our national life will become a thing of the past,” Atiku added.