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Bandits Invade Kaduna School, Abduct Scores Of Pupils, One Student Shot

More than 100 students were kidnapped from their elementary school in northern Nigeria early Thursday morning by unknown assailants on motorcycles, witnesses told local media outlets and BBC News. One student was said to have been shot in the chaos at the school in the town of Kugira, in Kaduna state, and taken to a hospital.

BBC quoted witnesses as saying the children were between the ages of 8 and 15, and that one teacher was taken along with them.

The abduction comes just days after another mass-kidnapping in Nigeria’s tumultuous north, which reportedly saw scores of children, mostly girls, seized by militants in Borno state, further to the east.

Kidnap gangs, known as bandits, have seized hundreds of people in recent years, especially the north-west.

However, there had been a reduction in the mass abduction of children over the past year until this week.

The eyewitness said that one pupil was shot by the gunmen and is currently receiving medical attention at the Birnin Gwari hospital.

Kuriga is in Kaduna state and an official from the state government confirmed the incident to the BBC but failed to give details.

Kidnap gangs have seized hundreds of people in recent years in Nigeria

In January, bandits killed a school principal in the area and abducted his wife.

The kidnapping comes days after dozens of women and children were feared kidnapped by the Boko Haram Islamist group while they were collecting firewood in north-eastern Nigeria.

However the two cases of mass abductions are not thought to be related.

The criminal kidnap gangs bringing fear to north-western Nigeria are separate to Boko Haram in the north-east, although there have been reports that they may have worked together on occasion.

In an attempt to curb Nigeria’s spiralling and lucrative kidnapping industry, a controversial law that has made it a crime to make ransom payments was passed in 2022. It carries a jail sentence of at least 15 years, however no-one has ever been arrested.

Earlier this year, the family of a group of sisters kidnapped in the capital, Abuja, denied a police statement that the security forces had rescued the girls, saying that they had no choice but to pay the ransom.

Report courtesy: BBC

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