The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) on Saturday lamented frequent abduction of students in the country, saying it was relieved that 91 students of Salihu Tanko Islamiya School Tegina, in Niger State, abducted three months ago, have been freed from captivity.
The organization however condemned the death of one child who died while held by his abductors.
In a press statement, made available to LEADERSHIP Sunday, UNICEF representative in Nigeria, Peter Hawkins lamented over the abducted children.
He said children who went in search of knowledge were abducted at their school, which is supposed to be a safe place for them, while exercising their fundamental right to an education.
“They spent 88 days in the hands of their abductors before being freed yesterday. It is a tragedy and utterly unacceptable that one of these children, Hayatu Hashimu who was just six years old, died in captivity.
“We rejoice with the families whose children have been freed and express our deepest condolences to little Hayatu’s family, who have just suffered the worst loss on top of the tragedy they have gone through for the last 88 days,” said Peter Hawkins.
No family should lose a child just because it took the right decision to send that child to school, UNICEF Representative said, adding that schools should not be a target.
‘’ The children should not be a target, education is a fundamental right of every child and any attack on an educational institution is a violation of that right,’’ he said.