Students abducted in deadly attack on school and church

Published 08 September 2020  |  
(Photo: Pexels/Brett Sayles)

One person has been killed in a rampage by gunmen in Kaduna State, Nigeria, in which several children were kidnapped.

Gunmen attacked the Damba-Kasaya Community in Chikun Local Government Area on motorbikes at around 7:45am on Monday local time.

They invaded the Prince Academy secondary school, where they abducted teacher Christiana Madugu.

Children abducted by the attackers have been named as Happy Odoji, 14, Miracle Danjuma, 13, her sister Favour Danjuma, 9, who was abducted from her home, and Ezra Bako, 15.

Schools had only recently been allowed to reopen in Kaduna State after lockdown so that students could sit their final exams.

Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) said the kidnappers contacted the family of the Danjuma sisters and confirmed they were holding their children, but made no further demands.

During the rampage, the gunmen destroyed musical instruments and the public address system at Aminchi Baptist Church before setting it on fire.

Villager Benjamin Auta was killed as he and othes attempted to pursue the gunmen. He leaves behind a wife and baby.

The attackers are said to be Fulani militia.

A report this month by Mission Africa International says that "Fulani invaders" have been reponsible for displacing people from their homes across southern Kaduna.

The organisation estimates that at least 500 people were killed between January and June this year, and that 50,000 people from over a hundred communities have been displaced.

They "cannot currently go to farm and harvest their produce", and "in some of the communities, they have to pay protection taxes to invaders to get to their farms", the group said.

CSW Chief Executive Mervyn Thomas said: "The situation in southern Kaduna is pressing and increasingly desperate. We extend our condolences to the family of Mr Auta, and our prayers are with those who anxiously await the safe return of their loved ones.

"We urge the Nigerian government to address this violence and insecurity in an earnest and unbiased manner, to provide humanitarian assistance for the burgeoning number of displaced people and to guarantee their safe return to their homes and lands.

"We also call on the European Union and the governments of the UK and US to encourage the Kaduna state and federal governments to provide for these IDPs, who continue to rely on NGO and church donations for survival, and to allocate resources towards assisting them as a matter of urgency."


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