As the world commemorates International Day of Education today, Amnesty International condemns the abduction of 6 primary school pupils in Doma, Nassarawa state. In the early hours of Friday, 20 January 2023, gunmen abducted 6 pupils, 3 girls and 3 boys aged 4-6 years of LGEA Primary School, Alwaza, Doma LGA, Nassarawa State. Four of the abducted pupils remain in captivity. This is the latest in a string of abductions of school children in Northern Nigeria. As of 2022, Amnesty International published that over 1,500 school children have been kidnapped by Boko Haram and bandit armed groups in Nigeria since the abduction of 276 Chibok school girls.
While in captivity, school children are at risk of torture, humiliation, hard labour, rape, and other human rights abuses. The Nigerian authorities must take all necessary steps to restore them to safety, as well as all other children who remain in captivityOsai Ojigho, Director, Amnesty International Nigeria
Amnesty International has previously called the attention of the Nigerian authorities to take proactive measures to protect schools from attack and to rescue those students that are still in captivity. The constant threat of abduction in schools in northern Nigeria has forced many children to stop their studies. The Nigerian authorities must prevent these abductions from happening, prosecute those responsible for these crimes and ensure that they face justice in fair trials. Every child’s right to education must be protected.