Gunmen Invade Another Lagos College, Kidnap Six
SAN FRANCISCO October 06, (THEWILL) – About 15 gunmen suspected to be militants on Thursday invaded Lagos State Model College, Igbonla, Epe, whisking away the Principal, a teacher and for four junior students.
THEWILL gathered that the students had just resumed school and returned between Monday and Tuesday .
The abductors, stormed the junior school assembly hall while the children were praying having gained entry into the school premises from the gate of the boy's hostel.
“It was around 8am . They came here shooting in the air. They entered through the hole under the gate by the boy's hostel. They were wearing different clothes. One wore blue and red clothes. Another one tied something on his head and two of them covered their faces,” a student told reporters.
“They just entered and said 'everyone lie down. We started running. I and many others ran into the bush. People were just running in different directions. Then, they took some students away and some were following them.”
Deputy Governor, Dr. Idiat Adebule, who visited the school after the incident, was seen assuring apprehensive parents who attempted to take their wards home, declaring that security has been beefed up.
Adebule said the incident was unfortunate, adding that such has never been experienced since establishment 29 years ago.
“Governor Akinwunmi Ambode has directed police, Navy and other security agencies to rescue the children within the shortest possible time,” she said.
“It is true that in the last 29 years that this school was established, we have never experienced such a thing like this, but now that it has happened and it is confronting us, we must come together to find a lasting solution to it. We, as government, parents, the school and security agencies, must remain united to solve this problem.
“I know you are angry, I know you are worried and I know you are agitated, but we must look for the solution. I plead for the understanding of parents in this matter. I know how traumatic it could be, I know how emotional the issue we are discussing could be, but the best we can do is to handle it with care and with utmost wisdom that God can give us.
“It is God who secures, it is God who protects and even in other climes where you have everything, you still have this type of incursion once in a while, but what we should be talking about is how can we collectively solve this problem.
“This is an incursion and we shall face it and deal with it appropriately. We are not happy about this incident. It is a great challenge to us as a government but this is why we are serving at this time. We want to implore the parents planning to take their children away to not panic. We have met with the affected parents and school management.”
Scores of policemen led by the Commissioner Fatai Owoseni, soldiers and local vigilantes were all over the area.
Owoseni confirmed that four children, a teacher and Principal were taken away saying the abductors kidnapped six children but two were found by policemen.
He revealed that that helicopters have been deployed to survey the surrounding bushes, adding that detectives were combing the forests.
THEWILL recalls that three female students of Babington Macaulay Junior Seminary, Agunfoye-Lugbusi, were abducted from their school on February 29 by unknown gunmen at about 8p.m in similar circumstances.
The girls were however rescued few days later at the Igbokuta area of the State while the six suspected kidnappers have been charged to court.
They are: Emmanuel Arigidi, 37: Gift Pius, 30: Omoni Rufus Fred, 32: Owei Omobo Geofrey, 38: Akanji Seun, 38: and James Henry Segun, 29.
Story by David Oputah