Minister of state for education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba has stated that the federal government is “constrained to stop negotiations” with bandits, adding that ransom payment is fuelling abductions.
Nwajiuba spoke Wednesday while fielding questions from State House reporters after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He stated that the bandits used the funds raised from the payment of ransoms to rearm themselves, thereby escalating insecurity in the country.
Speaking on what the government was doing over the video that went viral where some of the kidnapped students in Kaduna State were being tortured by kidnappers, Nwajiuba reassured Nigerians that efforts were being made to rescue the children.
“Truly speaking, it is disheartening anytime any of our students are taken at any point, I can assure you that the federal government is doing all that it can. We have held several meetings with our security personnel and that whole region,” he said.
“We are constrained to stop negotiations with bandits because we’ve seen that every time they get any payment, it leads to further escalation because they reequip and they rearm and then they go back.”
Asked what measures are in place to ensure that federal government schools are not attacked by bandits, the minister said: “I had already said that the whole of government approaches to security exercise is not just limited to our schools.
“Yes, the federal government owns a few federal colleges around Nigeria, out of the 25,000 secondary schools; federal government owns only 120 of them.
“But we’re not limiting ourselves to our own institutions at all; we’re looking at the security as a national policy is a whole of government engagement.”