Federal Government warns of potential terrorist attacks on schools in 14 states and FCT

Federal Government warns of potential terrorist attacks on schools in 14 states and FCT

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The Federal Government has issued a warning, stating that schools in 14 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, are under the threat of attacks by bandits and insurgents.

Hajia Halima Iliya, the National Coordinator of Financing Safe Schools in Nigeria, disclosed to The PUNCH on Sunday that data identifying vulnerable schools had been gathered for necessary intervention.

Although Iliya refrained from naming the specific states, Hammed Abodunrin, the Commander of the National Safe Schools Response Coordination Centre within the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, mentioned some, including Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Benue, Yobe, Katsina, FCT, Kebbi, Sokoto, Plateau, Zamfara, and three others.

Iliya elaborated on the initiation of the Safe School Initiative across various states, indicating that measures were being taken to fortify schools against potential attacks.

She stated, “The project is underway. We initiated implementation in 2023 with the establishment of the National Safe Schools Response Coordination Centre, which we aim to replicate at state and local government levels.”

“The states have identified the most vulnerable schools in each senatorial zone for the implementation of the National Plan on Financing Safe Schools Programme (2023-2026).”

Iliya further noted that state governors had expressed intentions to allocate funds for the Safe School Initiative to ensure the protection of students and educators in high-risk areas.

“Some states have allocated funds for the Safe Schools Programme in their 2024 budget, aligning with the National Plan. We aim to collaborate with the states to guide them through the implementation process,” she added.

“We have reached out to all states; letters have been sent to include Safe Schools in their budget and to select the most vulnerable schools. More than 11 states have responded. State budgets will be utilized for enhancing physical infrastructure such as school fencing and implementing other security measures.”

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