The security unit of the Federal Polytechnic Offa, Kwara State, has called the attention of the school community to the new wave of kidnappings in the state, which it linked to cattle herders chased from other states.
In an internal memo signed by an official, Atinukemi Abass, the unit said recent kidnappings in Offa and Oyun local government areas were “traceable to the migration of the banned herdsmen from Osun, Oyo and Ondo states.
“The Management therefore wishes to remind all Staff and Students of the Polytechnic of the need to be security conscious within and outside the campuses,” the memo read.
Reeling out safety precautions, the unit advised the staff and students to report any suspicious movement promptly and minimise outings at the outskirts of the town.
“Students resident in the hostels are to remain in their hostels after 6 p.m. Hostel Porters are requested to do a daily head count of students in the hostels and forward daily report to the DSA.
“Staff and Students should refrain from walking lonely paths alone and not be distracted with headphones or phone conversations. Late and early travelling should be totally avoided,” the security unit advised.
But the spokesperson of the police in the state, Peter Okasanmi, said he was not aware of any recent case of kidnapping in the two local government areas mentioned in the memo.
“The command is firmly on ground to avert any security threat. The Commissioner of Police, Kwara State, CP Mohammed Lawal Bagega, last week held an emergency security meeting with Area Commanders, Divisional Police Officers (DPOs) and heads of tactical units in the Command on the need to ensure no security breach,” he said.
On anxiety over alleged sighting of strange faces in parts of the state, Mr Okasanmi said the police were monitoring the situation.
The alarm raised by the school authorities comes a day after Saliu Abdulkadri, the Seriki of Fulani in Igangan, Oyo State, announced that his family has relocated to Ilorin, the Kwara State capital.
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Mr Abdulkadri and his kinsmen left Igangan in Ibarapa Local Government Area of Oyo State last Friday on the expiration of a seven-day ultimatum issued to them by Mr Sunday Adeyemo popularly known as Sunday Igboho, a self-styled freedom fighter.
Mr Adeyemo asked Fulani residents to leave so as to check kidnappings allegedly perpetrated in the area by herders linked to the ethnic group.
He accused Mr Abdulkadri of harbouring the herders allegedly kidnapping and killing residents of the community.
Mr Adeyemo had defied a warning by Governor Seyi Makinde to stay away from the area and led some youth to Ibarapa.
The attack provoked a clash with Fulani residents, leading to the burning of houses and cars, including those of Mr Abdulkadri.
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