•How neighbour abducted, killed my daughter – Dad
•ACF, CSOs, lawmaker express shock
By Ibrahim Hassan-Wuyo, Abdulmumin Murtala and Bashir Bello
As Nigerians are yet to recover from the shock over the alleged kidnap and brutal murder of a five-year-old pupil, Hanifa Abubakar, by her school teacher, Abdulmalik Tanko, in Kano, another schoolgirl, an eight-year-old, Asma’u Wa’alamu, has been reportedly kidnapped and murdered in like manner in Zaria, Kaduna State.
This is as the Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, the member representing Nasarawa Federal Constituency of Kano State in the House of Representatives, Nasiru Ali Ahmad, and concerned Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, in the state have expressed shock over the killings and other anti-social and criminal acts being committed against girl child and called on the government to ensure that perpetrators face the full wrath of the law.
Vanguard had reported how Abdulmalik Tanko, a teacher, allegedly kidnapped and killed Hanifa, who was his at a private school located in Kwanar Dakata in Nassarawa Local Government Area of Kano State. According to the police, the principal suspect, Tanko, confessed to poisoning the little Hanifa with N100 rat poison when he realised that she had recognised him.
Asma’u, according to sources, was in captivity for over a month. One of the sources, who did not want his name in print, said the incident was allegedly perpetrated by one Kabir, a neighbour to the victim’s father, Alhaji Shuaibu Wa’alamu.
A post by one Musa Ahmed and shared by Hausa Fulani on Instagram, hinted that the young girl was abducted while on her way to buy a recharge card, adding that a ransom of N3 million was demanded and paid by the family. “My friend’s daughter, an eight-year-old girl was kidnapped on her way to buy a recharge card in our neighbourhood. She was with her abductors for 42 days who demanded the sum of N3 million which was given to them, but sadly, they killed the girl and buried her in a shallow grave”, the post read.
Dad accuses neighbour
Meanwhile, the father of the murdered schoolgirl, Alhaji Shuaibu Waalamu, accused his neighbour of kidnapping and killing his 8-year-old daughter, Asma’u, after he had paid N3 million ransom.
Speaking in an interview with Sunday Vanguard, Wa’alamu said Asma’u was abducted on the 9th of December 2021 and when she failed to return home, he lodged a formal complaint with the police.
“After some days, the abductors called me and demanded N15m but we negotiated and I first gave them N2m. They collected the money in Rigasa area of Kaduna. Later, they called me again and demanded another N1. 045m as the only condition to release my daughter.
“I did not argue. I gave the money to them. However, after paying the ransom as demanded on the 19th of January, they called me and told me that they had killed my daughter and switched off their phone.
“You see since from the initial stage, I was following her kidnappers and doing their bidding because of the fear of losing her. Now, they have killed her”, Wa’alamu lamented.
The distraught father stated that he knew those that kidnapped and killed her daughter. “I know those who kidnapped her and killed her. They are around us. I’ve strong evidence. I have told the police. And they are on it. In fact, the suspects have been arrested,” he stressed.
When Vanguard called the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, in Kaduna, ASP Muhammad Jalige, said investigations have commenced on the matter and the command would address the media soon.
Though, the police in Kaduna are yet to confirm the incident as at the time of filing this report,
ACF, in a statement in Kaduna by its National Publicity Secretary, Emmanuel Yawe, has called on the government to save the Nigerian children who have been trapped in “this web of inhumanity created by school teachers, proprietors and administrators.”
The statement read: “The latest of these cases of horror is the alleged kidnap and murder of five-year-old pupil, Hanifa Abubakar by her teacher Abdulmalik Muhammed at a private school in Kwanar Dakatar in Kano state. “This is a horror story comparable to what happened in December last year when Sylvester Oromoni a 12-year-old student of Dowen College, was bullied and then tortured to death by his fellow students because he refused to join them in their cult activities.
“The ACF would like to call the attention of the authorities to this new epidemic of drugs, brutality, cults and death which is taking over all schools across the country and endangering the lives of our daughters and sons and the future of our country.”
Child Rights Act
Meanwhile, concerned civil societies in Kano, have called on the Kano state government to ensure that the abductor and killers of school girls face the death penalty for what they described as the ‘barbarian’ act.
At a press conference in Kano, the Executive Director of Youth Society for the Prevention of Infectious Diseases and Social Vices, YOSPIS, Zainab Nasir Ahmad, who read the statement on behalf of the groups, also called on the state government to hasten to sign the Child Rights Act to law without further hesitation. The groups also urged that strict supervision and inspection of private schools be adhered to in the state to avoid any future occurrences.
Lawmaker petitions NASS
Also reacting, a member representing Nasarawa Federal Constituency of Kano State in the House of Representatives, Nasiru Ali Ahmad, has expressed worries over the alarming number of missing children in his constituency and called for immediate action to curtail the ugly trend. Ahmad, who stated this when he visited Hanifa’s family to sympathize with them, said he has petitioned the National Assembly over the issue to compel the government to take drastic action against the perpetrators.