A soldier and a policeman were also killed during the attack.
Security officials have confirmed the abduction of at least 100 female students in Borno State.
The girls, final year students of the Government Girls Secondary School Chibok, Chibok Local Government Area of the state, were kidnapped from their school on Monday night.
The incident occurred about three weeks after the state government closed down all public schools to avert further attacks on students. The Boko Haram terrorist group has attacked many schools in Northeast Nigeria killing scores of students and staff.
PREMIUM TIMES learnt that the female students were asked to return to school to write their final year secondary school exams that was supposed to commence this week.
The Borno State Police Commissioner, Tanko Lawan, confirmed the kidnap to journalists. He, however, declined comments on the exact number of students affected.
“We have received the report about the kidnapping of students by gunmen in a school in Chibok Local Government Area last night,” Mr. Lawan said. “But we have no details on the actual number of the students for now; our men are still on the trail of the abductors”.
A senior official of the State Security Service, who does not want his name mentioned as he is not permitted to speak to journalists, provided more details of the kidnap.
“The abduction happened at about midnight when these hoodlums called Boko Haram attacked the school, killed a soldier and policeman and took away over a hundred female students in a lorry,” he said.
The SSS officer added that “we have been able to locate the vehicle where it broke down and our men have moved in to intercept the gunmen; but we understand that some of the girls were able to escape and made it back to the town”.
An official of Chibok local government, who sought anonymity for security reasons, told PREMIUM TIMES that “the gunmen actually came in two Hilux pickup vans but had to intercept a lorry that was conveying bags of grains to Askira-Uba Local Government.
“They offloaded the grains and ordered the abducted student into the lorry and took them away.”
The official said many of the girls summoned courage to escape by holding some branches of trees while the lorry was moving in the night. They hung there until the lorry went far before jumping down and made it back to town, he said.
“Some others jumped off the lorry since it was not moving at high speed and the road was sandy”.
“Many of the girls have been able to make it back through the bushes, but others are yet to be found; but we understand that the chairman of Chibok local government had led some security operatives to trail the track of the lorry,” the official added.
The official said the number of girls kidnapped cannot be more than 200 “because we are just talking about the final year students, not all students in the school.”
Chibok is an agrarian town located about 130km south-west of Maiduguri. It shares a border with Sambisa Forest, believed to be one of the major camps of the Boko Haram.
The Boko Haram is responsible for the killing of thousands of people in an insurgency that began since 2009. Over 1,500 people have been killed in 2014.
Monday’s abduction occurs less than 24 hours after a bomb explosion killed over 70 people in the Nigerian capital, Abuja. The Boko Haram is believed to be responsible for the attack.
The attacks occur despite almost a year of emergency rule in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.
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