By Olawale Ajimotokan
The Education Secretariat of FCT Administration has debunked reports that schools in the Bwari Area Council have been closed due to the fear of the residents that the area might have been infiltrated by bandits after sighting trucks loaded with strangers in the communities bordering Kaduna State on Wednesday.
The Acting Secretary Education Secretariat, Abdulrazaq Leramoh made the rebuttal yesterday at a press conference attended by the representatives of the Commissioner of the FCT Police Command and the Department of State Services (DSS).
While admitting that the security challenges being experienced across the country had been of utmost concern to the FCT authority, Leramoh said the administration had continued to put all efforts and strategies together to safeguard the territory.
He allayed the fears of members of the public, parents, and guardians about the safety of all school-age students in the various schools in the FCT by assuring that no security breach had been recorded to warrant the closure of schools as reported.
The acting secretary, who is also the Director, Administration and Finance, stressed that all students under the Education Secretariat custody were safe while FCT Schools remained safe with effective and efficient learning and teaching taking place unhindered.
He therefore appealed to parents, guardians and the stakeholders not to relent in complementing the government efforts by sustaining the various safety measures the FCT Administration had already put in place while reminding them that security is everybody’s business.
He also affirmed that the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello has assured, through the security agencies of the administration that adequate security would be deployed to the flashpoints in the territory.
“As we speak, the police, Department of State Services, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Nigeria Air force, and even the Nigeria Army are all around the schools that are in sessions to ensure adequate security is given, “ he said.
He said that most FCT schools, including the tertiary institutions of learning, are presently on a mid-term break after finishing their terminal and semester examinations. He said the fact that the schools were on vacation did not imply they were shut down because of security threats.
He stated further that, some FCT Schools which resumed the third term academic session last month had been running smoothly with daily and intensive monitoring and inspection mechanism in place by various departments mandated with such responsibilities.
“Some institutions like Baze University are currently on break and authorities of these schools are taking measures to ensure that their schools are adequately secured before they resume,” he said.
He stressed further that in relation to the security in the tertiary institutions, the DSS had also created a forum where the Vice-Chancellors and Rectors of those institutions met monthly to ensure that adequate strategies were put in place on the campuses.
There was panic in Bwari yesterday when the residents saw scores of strangers, said to be migrant herders packed in many trucks passing through the area.
One resident said they later realised that the itinerant herders, who were coming from Niger Republic, were heading towards Bauchi State.