Nigeria closes schools in Abuja due to attack worries
Some areas of the city are getting more security, according to officials.
Due to security concerns in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, and the neighbouring state of Nasarawa, all schools have been instructed to close and send students home.
Armed gangs may be preparing strikes in numerous states, including the capital, according to intelligence sources.
In recent years, kidnapping gangs have turned their attention to schools, particularly in northern Nigeria, where hundreds of students are being abducted for ransom.
Security chiefs are currently in a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.
The majority of private schools had to close on Wednesday afternoon because they were in the middle of exams.
The BBC was informed by a representative of the association of private school owners in Abuja that the capital’s local government had given the order to close the schools.
At the end of the next week, he said, those schools with sufficient security procedures would be permitted to have a one-day award ceremony.
However, the news has worried parents in a city where many civil workers live and frequently send their kids to private schools.
While some Abuja schools had already ended the semester, most weren’t supposed to until the following week.
He continued by saying that those with sufficient security precautions had been granted permission to hold the one-day award-giving day that many had been planning.
Since armed men burst into a prison in the city a few weeks ago and released hundreds of prisoners, Abuja residents have been nervous.
At least three presidential guards from an elite team were killed on Sunday in the city’s Bwari neighbourhood.
They had been reacting to threats of an impending attack on the nearby Nigerian Law School. Since then, the nearby Veritas University has closed and sent its students home.
The government closed one of its secondary schools the following day in the Abuja neighbourhood of Kwali due to a nearby security situation.
Since President Buhari took office in 2015, the city has never experienced an amount of insecurity this high.
At key places in the city center, security services have recently increased their protection presence.
But even among lawmakers, this doesn’t seem to be doing much to ease concerns.
This week, an MP warned colleagues who were away from the city to stay away for their own safety, underscoring the inadequacies of Mr. Buhari’s administration to address the country’s pervasive insecurity.
Though they lack the numbers to do so, opposition senators on Wednesday issued a six-week deadline for the president to resolve the security situation or risk being impeached.
At least ten schools in the states of Zamfara, Kaduna, Kebbi, and Niger saw attacks and widespread kidnappings last year.