A Tale of Two Teachers

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Mallam Mukthar Gulma and Abdulmalik Tanko are both teachers. Gulma is a teacher at the Federal Government College, Birnin Yauri, Kebbi State, and Tanko, the proprietor of Noble Kids Nursery and Primary School, Kano State. Thus, while one deals with teenagers, the other is a minder of children. Yet, they love their students/pupils differently.

Here are their stories. Bandits recently invaded the college, where Gulma was teaching and they abducted some of his students. But, in displaying a rare courage, he took himself to the bandits and said they should either release his students or take him along with them and the bandits did as he said and took him along. He was only released with his students, some days ago after spending days with their captors.

From Noble Nursery School in Kano, Tanko, the proprietor himself, kidnapped one of his pupils, Hanifa Abubakar, 5, demanded a ransom of N6,000,000, part of which was already paid, but ended up poisoning the little girl, cut her into pieces and buried in a shallow grave. Tanko and his accomplices were later arrested and they confessed to the crime, saying he killed her, because she recognised him.

Above are two contradictory circumstances that life just threw up in a weird society. While no one has said little or nothing about Gulma’s act of courage – indeed, the type that merits a national award – the entire social space, has since been mourning the mindlessness of Tanko and others, who just cut short a promising life as a result of their personal greed.

Perhaps, society needs to encourage the like of Gulma to prevent other animals in human skin like Tanko from traveling the inhuman route as frequently as they now do. Hanifa was a totally innocent child, who probably trusted the animal called Tanko, like every child would anyone, who showed them love and care. But he exploited that and sent her to an early grave.

These two examples must be dealt with, seriously and deservingly, by the leadership, so that while rewarding good deeds on the one hand as Gulma did by standing up for his students, the leadership and society must also sanction and punish the deliberately callous choice by Tanko as some form of deterrence to evil doers in the society. While congratulating and thanking Gulma, it’s important the full weight of the law is brought down on Tanko and his gang of criminals.