Yobe bloodbath: Massive outrage across Nigeria over Boko Haram slaughter of 59 students

Boko Haram members

A protest demanding firmer government action against Boko Haram will hold Thursday

Anger and frustration reverberated across Nigeria Wednesday, a day after the extremist Boko Haram sect slaughtered nearly 50 students in Yobe State, in a bloody assault that stirred a nation fatigued by Boko Haram killings, and ridiculed President Goodluck Jonathan’s claim of success against the sect.

Politicians, civil society groups, political parties, individuals issued statements Wednesday condemning the attack, mourning the victims, and criticizing the government for failing to foil an attack that seemed predictable since school children had previously been murdered that way in the same state.

“This will not be the first time in recent times that school children are being attacked, and it is particularly disheartening that the Federal Government is yet to devise a strategy of keeping our schools safe from terror attacks,” former Vice President Atiku Abubakar said in a statement.

“When you attack students, you are attacking the foundation of the country’s future. So this attack to me, is to plunge the nation into a bleak and blank future,” said Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma-Egba. “It is obvious that we are now dealing with a bunch of animals to whom human life is now totally meaningless and worthless.”

Armed assailants descended on Federal Government College, Buni Yadi in Yobe in the dead of night Tuesday, setting the hostels alight as the pupils slept in their dormitories, before shooting and hacking to death those who attempted to flee.

One of the bereaved parents was quoted by activist Ibrahim Wala as narrating how his son narrowly escaped death by jumping into a ditch where he witnessed his school mates being slaughtered.

According to the boy’s father, for the hours the attack lasted, and despite the presence of security operatives in Buni-Yadi town, no security personnel or rescue team showed up at the school.

“The murder of innocent school children by some psychopaths is most barbaric, inhuman and criminal,” said Governor Rauf Aregbesola of the State of Osun.

“What could drive people to do such mad thing is unimaginable. What for and in the name of what could anyone murder innocent school children in such cold blood?”

The attack occurred less than 12 hours after President Jonathan assured Nigerians his administration was making gains rooting the insurgents from Yobe, Borno and Adamawa States.

In a televised interview, Mr. Jonathan rebuked a suggestion by the governor of the worst-hit state of Borno, Kashim Shettima, that government forces were under-motivated and ill-equipped to fight the deadly and protracted war.

The comments were “unfortunate”, and untrue, the president said.

But as if to give weight to Mr. Shettima’s concerns, army chief, Major General Kenneth Minimah, on Wednesday told a Senate committee the force was underfunded, according to the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN.

Major-General Minimah was later directed by the Senate Committee on Defence and Army to relocate temporarily to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

Mr. Minimah said the Army was up to the task and that it was just a matter of time before it would bring the insurgents to their knees, the NAN reported.

That pledge would barely reassure a nation that has witnessed multiple Boko Haram attacks in 2014 alone, with as much as 250 people killed.

As the attacks escalated, Mr. Jonathan has drawn increased criticisms over his handling of the crisis. The killings have continued despite the president’s repeated pledges to rein in the insurgents.

On Wednesday, activists rallied support online for a protest billed for Thursday to demand a firmer action from the federal government against the insurgents. The protest is to hold 10 a.m from the Unity Fountain, in Abuja.

“It truly hurts that children whom we sent to school as symbols of our unity as a country have become sacrificial offerings in some people’s project towards disunity,”said Bem Angwe, Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission. “This must not be allowed,”


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  • concernednigerian

    Please let respected muslim Northerners borrow a leaf from the elders of the Niger Delta during the insurgency there and get down to have an honest discussion with the operatives of Boko Haram. There is a limit to what outsiders can do. The cessation of militancy in the Niger Delta was a case in point whereby leaders from the geo-political zone went down to the creek and held extensive discussions with the boys. That singular act dissipated the insurrection and paved the way to amnesty and the attendant increase in oil production to the benefit of the entire country. The Nigeria Armed forces are equal to the task but their efforts are rarely applauded by the far-North. Rather they receive all sorts of threat about ICC and so on. Please let us put our heads together and bring the Boko Haram menace to an end. In this, we want to hear the voices of Junaid Mohammed and others.

  • ayoyo

    In the fifties, sixties, beyond and after, parents in western
    and southern regions of Nigeria invested a lot in their children’s education.
    This is the primary reason why the south is way ahead of the north in
    development. In order to address this imbalance, the federal government has
    poured tons of monies into the north’s educational system, not to mention
    billions being spent on the Aljamaris. All these are being done to help the
    north.

    Now comes BH, bent on sending the north back another generation.
    Our children are our future. The task of going after this group is not that of
    the federal government alone but all those who call themselves Muslims.

    Aside from giving Islam a bad name, they are also robbing us
    of our future

  • Garden-City Boy

    Why the outrage? Awusa got what they bargained for. The place is ungovernable as they they had wished for everybody. What a way to sow the wind and reap the whirlwind. Awusa should be left to deal with it.

    • MrITooKnow

      Cold blooded animal – what of the animal militants in your midst? It will come near you soon – coward!

      • Garden-City Boy

        You must be awusa man. Confirm.

        • zirem

          AND FOR THOSE WHO FEEL ITS OKAY FOR ANOTHER HUMAN BEING TO BE SLAUGHTERED
          SIMPLY BCOS THEY ARE ‘AWUSA’ AS you MENTIONED, THEN YOU ARE NO BETTER
          THAN BOKO HARAM, YOU JUST ARE NOT ARMED YET.

          • Garden-City Boy

            Now, tell me, who is doing this slaughtering, Igbos, Yorubas, Tivs, Efiks…who? I know it is a difficult question for you. But don’t try shifting it to kanuris, cows, goats,donkeys or to whatever tribes you have in your awusa arewa. After all, duka’n kwu daya. If only you barbarians can keep your criminal behavior to yourselves we will all have peace. The principle here is, like salespeople, the customer should be served what he needs …at a price. What you got is the price to pay for what you need and asked for.
            I am sure this opinion you express about “human slaughter” is not the same as after the Church bombing in Madalla, or the UN building massacre in Abuja. And that, exactly, is the reason awusas are a hated people. They see every issue through a myopic self-serving lens. When Southerners are victims…Ahhhhh! it is okay, normal…the usual nyamiri karirin banza….they should killed.. nothing to worry about. Now it is awusa …..Naaaaaa! why kill human beings? Where is Jonathan, clueless, powerless, visionless and everything-else-less. But you pretend not to know that Boko Haram is the brainchild of ‘visionary’ awusa leaders.
            Most unfortunately, this insane behavior of you people on grounds of tribe and religion and satanism does not seem to embarrass those of you who claim to be ‘humans’. Don’t you ever have shame…no matter how veneer? Are you really humans when, in this century, awusas still run around wielding swords and daggers, looking for throats to slash? Do you call yourselves human beings -products of creation….or products of the evolutionary big-bang theory? IOr, do I assume that several screws in all your jelly-filled skulls are loose? Please., don’t come to the forum to defend the indefensible.

          • Zirem

            Efic igbo yorubas or tiv is besides the point. you didn’t create yourself and before you anything you are human. but since for you what comes to mind first is if the person is Igbo, Yoruba or Hausa then of Cos no objectivity will out of what you say. Ethnic and Religious differences is the cause of our problems and it works for the government while the people are suffering.

          • Garden-City Boy

            You made one valid point -“Ethnic and Religious differences is the cause of our problems”. But again you back into the same pith of shameful, tight-lip hypocrisy that has become the society’s culture. You won’t say who engineers this ‘problem’. Those of you awusa demagogues would want a generic characterization of the ethnic-religious as our tis and our that, nibble at the edges and avoiding to dump the blame on awusa people who raised ethnic consciousness to a fever pitch.
            You want the rest of us to inherit the evil awusas brought on the rest of society and share the guilt of one clan’s misdemeanor? It does not work that way, my friend. Name on tribe apart from awusa that make barbaric murder of humans a favorite pastime. Name one tribe you allow the privilege to produce a head of state and all you get is a new cliche …ABACHA LOOT. Tell us about any other tribe in Nigeria that perceives the country as a conquest to plunder and pillage apart from awusa.
            Who, on grounds of tribe and religion, are so intolerant about others in leadership that they invoke terrorism and Boko Haram to destroy the very country they want to govern. Is that not awusa. Do you want to know who murdered 50,000 defenseless Igbo people in 1966? Can you tell your answer to everybody in your reply post? We are waiting for it. In identifying Nigeria’s problems and how they were create you better be definite, go to the point and put the blame were it belongs. Don’t go beating about the bush, becuase you ingratiate these people and make them swollen headed.
            .

          • Zirem

            the blame game is just an excuse to make ourselves fell better becos what we ordinary do as humans does not. By your claims u seem so certain about individuals that are the cause of our problems. shouldn’t you be helping this administration make arrest? cos if what say you are facts then it will go along way in helping this country.

    • mal

      Did u really believe what u wrote above? I %100 believe u r sick and need help.

  • Ayinde

    Let us observe the comments, a group condemns the mudrers for their satanic acts of killing innocent souls while another only condemns the federal government.
    Is that the way nations grow and advance, when a critical and substantial part of the population dont seems to see any thing wrong with these murderer act.
    When America was under attack the whole population rosevin unison to condemn the criminal elements.
    It about time we seat down and re-evaluate our values.
    There are no two ways to react to this act order than CONDEMN THIS ACT AND THOSE INVOLVED,.

  • max

    May their soul rest in peace

  • sir Oscie

    VERY DISHEARTENING THAT OUR COUNTRY HAS FOUND ITSELF IN THIS KIND OF SITUATION AND OUR SO CALLED GOVERNMENT IS DOING LITTLE OR NOTHING TO HELP END THIS MENACE INSTEAD 2015,CELEBRATIONS ETC IS ALL THEY ARE DOING WHILE PEOPLE DEAD IN THOUSANDS IN THE NORTH AS A RESULT OF THIS BH INSURGENCY AND FULANI HERDSMEN. GOD PLEASE HEAL OUR LAND OF ALL THIS BLOOD SHED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • zirem

    The federal Government and the Nigerian army have a lot questions to answer.I do not understand how boko haram were able to hold captive a school for hours with security operatives present in that same town. how far is the school from the main town.