Kogi Gov’t Announces Rescue Of All Remaining Abducted CUSTECH Students

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The Kogi State government has successfully rescued the remaining eight students of Confluence University of Science and Technology (CUSTECH), Osara, who were kidnapped early last month. This brings the total number of rescued students to 30.

LEADERSHIP recalls that 32 students were abducted from the school premises while preparing for their exams. Initially, four students were rescued, followed by another 16, and two students who managed to escape on their own, before the latest rescue of eight students.

Unfortunately, two of the abducted students were killed last week by the kidnappers after the state government refused to pay ransom, opting instead for a combined kinetic and non-kinetic approaches against the abductors.

The development was announced on Sunday by the state’s Commissioner for Information and Communication, Kingsley Fanwo. He stated that, “The Kogi State Government has announced the rescue of the remaining eight kidnapped students of Confluence University of Science and Technology, Osara. The Governor has directed full support towards the recovery of the students and their parents, while modalities are being put in place to make Kogi safer for all.”

Governor Ahmed Usman Ododo expressed profound gratitude to President Bola Tinubu for mobilising resources to ensure the rescue of the kidnapped students.

“We also thank the National Security Adviser immensely for his commitment to the release of the students and the general security of the State,” Fanwo added.

The statement also commended the efforts of the Chief of Army Staff, the Chief of Naval Staff, the Chief of Air Staff, the Director General of DSS, the Inspector General of Police, and all the officers and men of the Armed Forces, including the Pilots, for their roles in reuniting the rescued students with their families. The Kogi State Command of all security agencies, including the Police, DSS, NSCDC, and local hunters, were also appreciated for their efforts.

Governor Ododo also thanked Kwara State governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazak, for his personal commitment, cooperation, and support towards the success of the operation.

“The Kwara State Governor showed the reason he is effectively leading the Nigerian Governors Forum. His actions have also reinforced the Kogi/Kwara cooperation and unity of purpose,” Fanwo noted.

With the students now rescued, he said the the Kogi State government remains committed to enhancing security and ensuring the safety of all schools under the Safe School Initiative.

“As the State with the lowest out-of-school children in the North, we have put structures in place to keep our schools safe to ensure every child is not deprived of his or her right to education,” the Commissioner said.

Kogi State has domesticated the Child Rights Act and provides free education up to the secondary school level. Additionally, the state covers registration fees for all internal and external examinations, with budgetary allocations exceeding the UNESCO benchmark for education. “We do all of these to educate our children and make them responsible contributors to the economy of Nigeria,” Fanwo emphasised.

The State government, therefore, urged citizens to volunteer intelligence to security agencies to prevent crime, stressing that this approach is safer, cheaper, and better for all.

“All of us must come together to defeat banditry, kidnapping, and any form of criminality in our society,” the statement concluded.


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