At least 20 students are missing and one staff member dead after gunmen recently attacked Nigeria's Greenfield University.
This past Tuesday night, gunmen stormed Greenfield University in the Kaduna State of Nigeria. One staff member at the private institution was gunned down with several students having been subsequently abducted. While it is not yet clear how many students were abducted by the gunmen, there are currently 20 students who have been identified as missing. The attack is the latest in a spate of for-ransom abductions of school children in Nigeria.
Describing the events of Tuesday night, police spokesman, Mohammed Jalige, told AFP that, "There was an attack at about 20:15 (19:15 GMT) last night. The suspected bandits infiltrated the university in large numbers." Jalige went on to add that, "Some students are said to have been abducted but we are yet to ascertain how many. We have deployed our men to find the perpetrators and rescue the victims."
The attack on Greenfield University, which is the fifth incident since December of last year, is certainly not the last as Nigeria continues to experience a kidnap-for-ransom crisis. Since December, at least 600 students have been kidnapped from schools in the northern parts of the country which are often in remote areas and without adequate security infrastructure. Just last month, 300 students were abducted from the Government Girls Science Secondary School in Jangebe, Zamfara State, BBC reports. The students were released within 10 days of the abduction although government officials in Nigeria have since denied having paid a ransom for their release.
According to Al Jazeera, the perpetrators of these abductions are thought to be part of Fulani pastoralists and other tribes who, due to the adverse effect of climate change on their farming practices and livestock herding, have now turned to mass abductions as a lucrative enterprise.