I withdrew my son from public school because bandits were targeting him – El-Rufai

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Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna state, says he withdrew Abubakar, his son, from a public school because bandits were targeting him for abduction.

In September 2019, el-Rufai enrolled Abubakar, who was then six years old, as a primary one pupil of Kaduna Capital school.

According to the governor, his decision to send Abubakar to a public school was a way of showing his commitment to fixing public education and raising the standards.

It was later reported that el-Rufai withdrew his son from the school earlier in the year. The governor did not comment on the report.

But speaking in an interview with BBC Pidgin, el-Rufai said not only Abubakar but also one of his daughters was also enrolled in the school when she clocked six years old.

The governor said he had to “temporarily” withdraw his children from the school on the advice of security agencies after they received intel that the children were being targeted by bandits.

He said though he was confident about the ability of the school’s security team, he withdrew his children so they would not pose danger to other pupils in the school.

He also said at least three groups of bandits who had planned to infiltrate the school and kidnap Abubakar over his (el-Rufai’s) stand on non-payment of ransom have been intercepted.

“My son and my daughter are registered in the school because his sister became six and we had to register her,” el-Rufai said.

“But we have had to temporarily withdraw them for the security of the school because we got intercepts from at least two groups that are planning to attack the school to kidnap my son.

“I don’t think they will succeed because there will be enough security there to prevent it but other children may be placed in danger.

“We have no idea what weapons they will come with. I have taken a stand against paying bandits and at least three groups of bandits have been intercepted planning to go to Kaduna Capital school and kidnap my son and ‘see if they catch my son, I go say I no go pay ransom?”

El-Rufai said Abubakar is currently being homeschooled. He added that his son will, however, take his examinations at Kaduna Capital school.

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