Armed ViolenceNews

Zamfara Abduction: Terrorists Overpowered Vigilante Group Trying To Repel Attack – Report

The terrorists who abducted over 300 schoolgirls from their school in Zamfara State Friday morning, overpowered members of a vigilante group that attempted to repel them, the News Agency of Nigeria reported.

HumAngle earlier reported how the heavily armed terrorists stormed Government Girls’ Secondary School in Jangebe Talata-Mafara Local Government Area of the state at about 1 am on Friday.

They dressed in army uniforms pretending to be security personnel and then broke into the students’ hostels, abducting more than 300 students, according to a BBC report.

But the Zamfara State Government, confirming the incident, said the number of the abducted students was yet to be ascertained.

“We are yet to verify the exact number of students kidnapped. Security operatives have launched a manhunt for the criminals,” Sulaiman Tunau Anka, the state Commissioner for Information and Culture, said.

“They went to school with vehicles. Some of the girls were made to trek. We are on top of the situations as all contacts and efforts are being made to rescue the kidnapped schoolgirls.”

NAN quoted a resident who gave his name Haliru Jangebe as saying that the local vigilantes tried to repel the kidnappers but were later overpowered.

“The bandits were too many and they all seemed to be carrying heavy arms as we heard gunshots from all parts of the town and when the shots stopped, we heard that the students had been taken away,” he told NAN.

The attack is the latest in a rising wave of mass abductions and attacks that have bedevilled the country.

The abduction came barely two weeks after hundreds of schoolboys were abducted in Niger State, Northcentral Nigeria by the terrorists known locally as bandits. The students were yet to be released as of press time.

The incident also happened a day after Bello Matawalle, Governor of Zamfara State said some repentant terrorists had surrendered their arms.

Matawalle has been pushing for a peace dialogue with the terrorists since he came to power.

But the Federal Government has insisted it would not consider amnesty for the terrorists.

“The government shall continue to deal with insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and other criminals who constitute a threat to innocent citizens across the country,” he said.

“Criminals are criminals and should be dealt with accordingly, without resorting to ethnic profiling. I have already tasked the new Service Chiefs to devise new strategies that will end this ugly situation where the lives of our people continue to be threatened by hoodlums and criminals,” President Muhammadu Buhari said during a joint security meeting of Northern State Governors’ Forum and traditional rulers on Thursday.

As at press time, the federal government is yet to react to the latest abduction.

Security Operatives On Rescue Operation

Abubakar Dauran, the state Commissioner for Security and Home Affairs, said security operatives have been mobilised to rescue the abducted victims and to restore peace in the area.

“We have already mobilised security men and members of the vigilantè who are now in pursuit of the abductors,” Dauran said.

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Aishat Babatunde

Aishat Babatunde heads the digital reporting desk. Before joining HumAngle, she worked at Premium Times and Nigerian Tribune. She is a graduate of English from the University of Ibadan.

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