The Executive Director, Life and Peace Development Organization, LAPDO, Mr. Franklin Oloniju, has charged the Nigerian Governors forum to come up with proactive measures to address security challenges confronting the Nigerian schools.
Mr. Oloniju, who is also the chairman, Ondo state civil society coalition, made this known in Akure while reacting to multiple abductions of pupils of government secondary schools in Niger and Zamfara states. He described the abduction as a great assault on the mental health of the pupils which can also hinder the pupils in fulfilling their ambitions.
Mr. Oloniju, who lamented the two attacks, urged the Nigerian Governors Forum to wake up to nipping in the bud the new criminal trend of picking pupils for ransoms. Mr. Oloniju, further called for strong security in schools, maintaining that there was need for a rejig in states security architecture to enhance appropriate response in the face of attacks.
The civil society activist, while explaining that the eyes of the international community are on Nigerian schools, stressed the need for strict investigation and punitive action for those caught perpetrating the abductions as this will serve as deterrent to others who might want to plan such attacks.
He further noted that the fight against the heinous trend was a collective one as efforts must be made to stop it from spreading to other regions of the country. Speaking on the Nigeria Union of teachers threat to close schools in the face of continuous attacks, Mr. Oloniju said the union was right as not only pupils are attacked.
He said when teachers are scared of being abducted they cannot contribute optimally to their students’ development. He further called on civil societies not to rest on their oars as advocacies are more needed now than before to rescue the nation’s education which is under threat.