Angered by the kidnap and subsequent murder of five-year-old Hanifa Abubakar by her school proprietor, Abdulmalik Muhammad Tanko, the Kano State government has revoked licences of all private schools operating in the state.
Hanifa was abducted on December 4, 2021 on her way back from Islamiyya school by her teacher and was later killed after her killer had collected N6million ransom.
The late Hanifa was killed by the proprietor after realising that his late pupil had recognised his face and buried her body in a shallow grave where it was exhumed after about two months.
Kano State commissioner for Education, Alhaji Sanusi Muhammad Kiru, who hinted about the revocation of licences of private schools while briefing journalists in his office yesterday, said following the unfortunate incident, the state government will not allow such incident to occur again.
Kiru noted that the issue of rape is also becoming rampant in private schools in the state, and as such serious measures need to be taken in ensuring that all private schools operating in the state are thoroughly screened.
The commissioner said a committee would be set up by the state government to screen all private schools, adding that any school that fails to pass the revalidation exercise would be shut down indefinitely.
The state government consoled the immediate family of the late Hanifa Abubakar and the entire people of Kano State over the gory incident that led to her death.
Meanwhile, the state governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, has vowed not to waste time in signing the death warrant of killers of the late Hanifa Abubakar who was poisoned to death by her school teacher and proprietor.
He promised to abide by the constitutional provision as the governor of the state to assent to death sentence in the circumstance where the court passes death sentence against Killers of the deceased.
He made this known yesterday when he paid a condolence visit to the deceased family at their residence in Dakata/Kawaji, Nassarawa local government area of the state.
The governor was accompanied by his deputy, Dr Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna; majority leader of the state House of Assembly, Labaran Abdul Madari, and other top government official.
Ganduje said, “We have good confirmation from the court handling the process that justice would be done. No stone would be left unturned until the nail is hit on the target. Whoever is found guilty of this heinous crime will also face death sentence without any waste of time.
“Our constitution provides that when a death sentence is passed, it is the constitutional power of the governor to assent to the execution of the culprit. I assure you all that I will not waste even for a second in discharging such responsibility”.
On the speed of the court proceedings, he said there would be speedy dispensation of justice, adding that “government will take good care of the family of our late child, Hanifa of blessed memory.”
He called on the people of the state to remain calm instead of taking laws into their hands, even as he urged them to cooperate with the authorities for justice to be administered on the culprit to serve as a deterrent to intending offenders.
Meanwhile, the Police in Kano State yesterday arraigned Abdulmalik Tanko, the suspected killer of the late Hanifa Abubakar.
The Police arraigned Tanko alongside Hashim Isyaku and Fatima Musa before a Chief Magistrate, Mahmud Jibin, at Gidan Murtala, Kano Metropolis, on charges of criminal conspiracy, kidnapping, concealing, keeping in confinement a kidnapped person and culpable homicide, contrary to section 97, 274, 277, 221 of the Penal Code.
he Police last week arrested Hanifa’s killer and his accomplices.
The state Attorney General and commissioner for Justice who pleaded with the court to grant them seven days for the prosecution counsel to properly prepare the charge filed also requested that the accused persons be remanded in the state’s correctional centre.
After the charges were read to the accused they were later remanded in the correctional facility and the matter was adjourned to February 2, 2022.
Meanwhile, some angry youths stormed the premises of Noble Kids Comprehensive College yesterday morning and set the school ablaze in protest against the killing of the five-year-old.
The school is situated in Kwanar Dakata community in Nassarawa local government area of the state.
The disturbing news of Hanifa’s death sparked outrage after the Police Public Relations Officer in Kano, Haruna Kiyawa, confirmed to reporters last Friday that Hanifa’s teacher, ] Abdulmalik Tanko, was indicted in the murder.
He revealed that Abdulmalik confessed that he kidnapped the girl and took her to his house where he contacted her relatives and demanded a ransom of N6 million.
In his reaction, Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, outlined some of the measures taken by the government to ensure justice was served in the murder of Hanifa.
He listed them to include the indefinite closure and withdrawal of the operational license of the school where the girl was buried.
According to the governor, the government is terribly disturbed that people entrusted with the care of children only turn out to be their murderers.
He added that the government has been in touch with Hanifa’s family and would remain so until justice prevails in the case, to serve as a deterrent to others.
The killing also caught the attention of President Muhammadu Buhari who ordered the police and the Ministry of Justice to uphold the integrity of the detective work that busted the case by preparing well and presenting a good case that would earn the respect of the court.
He also expressed the nation’s condolences to the family of the schoolgirl, saying Nigerians had hoped for her to return home alive and well.
Aisha Buhari Demands Justice For Hanifa
Meanwhile, the first lady of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari, has backed calls for justice for Hanifa Abubakar who was killed and buried in a shallow grave in a private school in Kano state.
Mrs Buhari yesterday on her Instagram page posted a short video of a sermon by an Islamic scholar, Abdallah Gadon Kaya, demanding justice for the late Hanifa.
In the video, Gadon Kaya called on the government and human rights groups to pick up the case of Hanifa and ensure that justice is served.
“His life is not better than the girl’s life. He should be killed the same way he killed her. And the execution should be done in public so that it will serve as a deterrent to others, the cleric said.
In her response, the first lady further wrote in Hausa, “Muna Goyon Bayan Hukunchin Malam”, which says, “We support the justice of Malam… Watch Out… Attention. #IGP #AGF #JUSTICEFORHANIFA.”
The killing of the five-year-old school girl in Kano state Hanifa by her teacher has continued to elicit reactions from Nigerians and women groups.
Also yesterday, the Gombe state chapter of the National Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) advocated prompt and appropriate punishment for the arrested murderer of the girl.
State chairperson of the association, Comfort Ali, in an interview with our correspondent, said the abduction and subsequent murder of the girl by her captor was despicable and condemnable.
She noted that only if appropriate punishment is meted out on the culprit that it would serve as deterrence to others.
Comfort said the association was devastated by the incident, adding that they are in support of any punishment to be meted to the killer as provided by the law.
The NAWOJ chairperson finally advised parents to earnestly monitor the movements of their children so that they can protect them from falling into the hands of evil people.