Abductions: Private Varsity Opts for Virtual Learning in Abuja
- These are scary times for schools in the north-central region of Nigeria, including the Federal Capital Territory
- As kidnappings by armed bandits in the region increases, private institutions are initiating safety measures across board
- One of such initiatives is to ensure that students remain in their homes and receive lectures virtually
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FCT, Abuja - The management of a private higher institution in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Veritas University, has decided to introduce online learning following concerns raised by parents over the security of students.
The university located in the Bwari axis, outskirts of the Nigerian capital is owned by the Catholic Church.
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The Punch newspaper reports that the school had earlier postponed resumption indefinitely because of insecurity.
The Bwari axis is close to Niger state, which has become a hotbed for bandits kidnapping school children in recent times.
A safety measure to avoid mass kidnappings
A parent, who did not want her name in print, revealed that the school authority had already issued a circular announcing the decision to offer online learning.
The circular signed by the university’s Registrar, Dr. Stella Chizoba, asked parents to decide whether their children would resume physically or virtually.
Part of the circular read:
“In recognition of this fact, therefore, and after due consultations, Veritas University Management has decided that the rest of the second semester of the 2021 session will be blended. That implies that lectures will be held both online and physically within the campus.
“In consequence, therefore, students and their parents/sponsors are free to decide whether to resume physically onsite in the university or to continue their lectures online.”
Communities in the outskirts of FCT groan
In a related development, The Nation newspaper reports that residents of Pegi community in the Kuje Area Council of Abuja recently urged the FCT administration to end the continuous kidnapping of people in the area by bandits.
A security town hall meeting to find a lasting solution to the lingering insecurity in the area was held recently and it was attended by religious, political leaders, Civil Society Organisations, and representatives of security agencies.
At the meeting, residents and some critical stakeholders, said their tears of anguish have never been wiped off after many years since their problems have remained unsolved.
Recall that bandits recently attacked the Nuhu Bamali Polytechnic, Zaria in neighbouring Kaduna state, abducting scores of students and lecturers in the institution.
The gunmen invaded the school located along the Zaria-Kaduna expressway on Thursday, June 10.
A statement from the polytechnic's management confirming the incident revealed that one student was killed, two sustained gunshot injuries, while two lecturers of the polytechnic were kidnapped during the attack.
Meanwhile, abductors of the over 136 students and staff of Salihu Tanko Islamiyya School, Tegina, in Rafi local government area of Niger state are demanding the sum of N110 million as a ransom for the safe release of the victims.
The bandits also threatened to kill the victims should the school or their parents fail to meet their demands on time.
The headteacher of the school, Abubakar Alhassan disclosed this to journalists, adding that the bandits’ called the parents of the victims.