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The Standard Gazette
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Kankara Abduction: UN Calls For Immediate Release Of Others Still In Captivity

  • commends ‘swift’ action by the Nigerian government
  • Suggest the provision of health and psychosocial support for children and parents.
  • Nigeria For Minister blames Buhari for abduction
  • Ezekwesili says Nigeria is a joke before the international community

The Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres has called for the “immediate” and “unconditional” release of those who are still held hostage by the terrorist.

This is following the release of the boys abducted by armed men from Government Science Secondary School in Kankara, on 11 December.

Mr Guterres commended “the swift action taken by the Nigerian authorities to rescue the children” through a communique issued by his Deputy Spokesperson, Farhan Haq.

The UN chief also called on the Nigerian government to ensure that the children and their families are “provided with the necessary health and psychosocial support”.

The boys arrived by bus in the capital of Katsina on Thursday after their release where they met the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.

Jihadist group, Boko Haram had claimed responsibility for the abduction but the Nigerian government dismissed the claim, describing it as the usual antics of the group. 

The government said the children were abducted by a local bandit. There were also discrepancies in the initial report concerning the actual numbers of children abducted.

Edward Kallon, the UN Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria tweeted that he was “delighted” about the release of the schoolboys. 

He congratulated the Nigerian Government for the swift action to secure their release while calling on the authorities to “make schools safe for teaching and learning.”

UNICEF Nigeria Representative Peter Hawkins said the “parents were awake at night, crying and awaiting the return of their sons” for one week.

He said his “thoughts and solidarity are with these children, their families and the Kankara community – who have endured an unimaginable ordeal this past week”, said UNICEF Nigeria Representative Peter Hawkins. 

Meanwhile, Nigeria former Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesili has faulted the country’s President Buhari over the children’s’ abduction.

Ezekwesili said the international communities believe Nigeria is a joke while calling on Mr Buhari to address significant issues concerning the country.

The former Minister said during an interview on Channels Television on Friday that “He (Buhari) needs to tell us exactly what happened with the Kankara kids; there is a problem here.” 

She added, “This country should not be taken for a ride by President Buhari and his government; This is very unbecoming and the whole world is laughing at us. They think we are jokers.

“Many countries did not even bother to show that anything had happened in our country because they felt who are these people and what are they doing to themselves?”

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