Why I won’t go back to school – Dapchi student
Despite assurances by both the Federal and Yobe State Governments, a second year senior student of the Government Girls Science Technical College, Dapchi, has insisted she will not return to the school, saying the experience was horrendous and frightening.
Boko Haram has so far returned nearly all 110 students kidnapped from the school on February 19, 2018.
Though Rakiya Adamu, who is a year two student, was among the lucky few that escaped on that fateful day when scores of her friends and schoolmates were kidnapped, she said she will never go back to school in Dapchi again, given the harsh experience they were meant to go through.
According to her, though she was lucky to have escaped when the terrorists struck, the experience was frightening for anyone to want to risk a second time.
In a report by the Interview magazine, she shared her horrific experience: “We were in school waiting for the Magrib prayer when we started hearing gunshots. We started running with our teachers, looking for where to hide. We ran and ran and jumped the fence. We became tired and ran into a nearby village where we asked for help…,’’ she said.
Rakiya described how the terrorists arrived and entrapped them, saying: “they wore army uniforms and were begging us to come. They said, ‘Come to us, we will help you” .
In a series of interviews conducted before and after the girls were released, the magazine spoke with parents, including the chairman of the parents of the abducted girls, Malam Bashir Manzo; the Dapchi youth leader, security men, and residents of the town, especially those living close to the school. Manzo, chairman of the abducted girls’ parents, said he knew something bad was going to happen on February 19: “I felt somehow throughout the day. I knew something bad was going to happen to me. But I prayed to God to protect me from evil and other bad things,” he said. As it turned out, her daughter, Fatima, was abducted as she went to fetch water to break her fast that evening.
Another parent, AbdullahiKawi, and father of kidnapped JSS2 student, Aisha, said the most traumatic part of the kidnap saga was the misinformation given the parents by Yobe State governor, Ibrahim Gaidam. The father of five – one boy and four girls – said: “People like me stoned the governor’s convoy because he lied to us when he knew how terrible we were feeling. I’ll never regret stoning him.” After the return of the girls, the parents have been divided on the assurances whether or not they would return their children to the school, despite assurances by the government that the school was now safe.
Following the return of the kidnapped girls, President Muhammadu Buhari had also assured that the government would deploy security operatives to public schools within the flashpoint states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe. Despite these assurances, both the students and their parents were to be convinced, saying that similar assurances were made when some of the abducted Chibok girls were released.