The Sokoto state government has ordered the immediate closure of 16 boarding schools over insecurity.
This development comes two days after Bello Matawalle, governor of Zamfara, ordered the closure of boarding schools around the state’s borders with Katsina and Sokoto states.
Last Friday, over 300 schoolboys were abducted by gunmen in Kankara, Katsina state.
Abubakar Shekau, Boko Haram leader, claimed responsibility for the abduction, but Aminu Masari, governor of Katsina, disputed the claim, saying the kidnappers are bandits and not members of Boko Haram.
In a statement on Thursday, Muhammad Bello, the governor’s special adviser on media and publicity, said the decision was reached at the state’s 17th security council meeting held at the government house.
He quoted Aminu Tambuwal, the state governor, as saying “the schools were to be closed, temporarily for two weeks”.
“This followed the brief received by the Council from the State Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Dr Muhammad Bello Abubakar Guiwa on the security situation in the affected areas and the threats this portends,” he said.
“The affected schools are: Government Girls Model Secondary School, Illela; Sultan Muhammadu Tambari Arabic Secondary School, Illela; Gamji Girls College, Rabah; Government Secondary School, Gada; Government Secondary School, Gandi and Government Secondary School, Goronyo.
“Others were: Government Secondary School, Isa, Government Secondary School Sabon Birnin Gobir, Boarding Primary School, Isa, Boarding Primary School, Balle and Boarding Primary School, Jabo.
“The remaining are: UBE Junior Secondary School, Sabon Birni, Government Secondary School, Kebbe, Government Secondary School, Tureta, Government Technical College, Binji and Olusegun Obasanjo Technical College, Bafarawa.”
Bello said the governor directed the ministries of basic and secondary education and those of science and technology to “temporarily merge the students of the affected schools with those of other schools for the continuation of their studies pending the improvement in the security situation of the affected areas”.
He said principals of the affected schools are to comply with immediate effect.