Bayelsa to Enact Law to Shield School Children From Kidnapping

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By Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa

Following cases of abduction of school children in some parts of the country, the Bayelsa State Government said at the weekend that it was putting measures in place to protect students in the state from being forcibly taken away by hoodlums from their places of learning.

To this end, the state Governor, Mr. Seriake Dickson, has signed into law the Education Safety Corps Law 2017, three months after he sent it to the state House of Assembly for consideration and passage.

Aside ensuring the safety of the school children, the   new law will provide the needed framework for the protection of facilities across the schools in the state which had recently been attacked by vandals, It was learnt.

At least 2,000 youths will also be employed in the first phase of the programme to man the school , working directly with the federal government-controlled security agencies in the state.

Dickson, while signing the law, thanked members of the Assembly for considering the bill as a priority and for passing it in record time, the same way they have always done since the inception of his administration.

He said the new law by extension will further enhance local security and called on the people of the state to support it and collaborate with those to be appointed as officials of the safety corps.

“I want to call on people of Bayelsa State to work with organs of government, law enforcement agencies, community leaders and also to collaborate and get ready to work with the officials of the Education Safety Corps that will be appointed in pursuance to the law I have just signed into existence,” he said.

Dickson added that only young people with proven character will be appointed as officials of the corps and urged those to be saddled with making the recommendations to focus on sound minds who can fit into the objective of the new law.

The governor explained that the latest law was another window of opportunity to lawfully provide employment opportunities for about 2,000 young women and men that will help to secure facilities in schools and communities.

In his remarks, Speaker of the Bayelsa House of Assembly, Konbowei Benson, said the law was  important for the safety and security of all young people in the various schools in the state.

He disclosed that the House after looking at the bill and observing its importance unanimously decided to pass it into law and assured the governor of the lawmakers’ “unshakable support” always.