An attempt by armed bandits to kidnap students of the Turkish International Secondary School in Kaduna State was thwarted on Friday, the Nigerian Army has said.
Acting on a tip-off on the impending abduction of the school children in the Rigachikun area of the state, troops of Quick Response Force of 1 Division of the army quickly mobilised to protect the school from the bandits.
Brigadier General Mohammed Yerima, who is the Director of Army Public Relations, disclosed this in a statement.
While the troops were securing the school, the army spokesman said another distress call was received that bandits had stormed the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation in Afaka.
He explained that the troops swiftly moved to the scene in the Igabi Local Government Area of the state and decisively engaged the armed bandits to prevent them from kidnapping the staff and students of the school.
“Following the firefight, troops were able to rescue 180 persons, comprising of 132 male students, 40 female students, and eight civilian staff.
“The bandits were said to have broken into the institution by breaching the perimeter fence of the school,” the statement said.
According to Yerima, the rescued students have been evacuated to a safe place while the injured were taken to a military facility for medical attention.
He stated that a combined team of operatives from the army, air force, police, and the Department of State Service (DSS) have been drafted to the forest in pursuit of the bandits.
Following the attack on the college, the Kaduna State government said a total of 39 students were yet to be accounted for.
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs in the state, Samuel Aruwan, noted that 23 female and 16 male students were still missing.
He stated that efforts were being sustained by the security agencies to track the missing students.
The school is just a few kilometres away from the Nigerian Defence Academy, and it also not too far from the Kaduna International Airport Road which is one of the hotbeds of banditry and kidnapping in the state.