6th May, 2014
The Nigerian Police Force says it has recovered a school bus belonging to the Divine International Academy School in Phase IV Nyanya, a suburb of Federal Capital Territory which was snatched on Tuesday morning by gunmen within the premises of the School.
The snatching of the bus had created pandemonium in the area where two bomb attacks by the insurgent group Boko Haram had claimed over 100 lives in less than a month as rumours spread that children were inside the bus when it was taken away by the by the unidentified gunmen.
As a result, parents had rushed to schools in the area to take their children home while other schools closed for the day.
However, the school authorities later said no child was inside the bus which was parked in front of the school when the gunmen forcefully took it from the driver.
Giving further information on the issue, Police spokesman, Frank Mba, a chief superintendent, said a report was registered by the the driver of the bus, Abu Sunday, at about 8:38 am to the effect that some armed men had snatched a white Toyota Hiace bus,, with registration number XG 246 GWA and the inscription Divine International Academy on the sides.
”As soon as the report got to us, we mobilized our response team immediately to the crime scene and other exit points. We tried to carry out a preliminary investigation, while being concerned about the safety of the children; but the good news is that the preliminary investigation by the Police as strongly supported by the authorities confirms the fact that none of the school children was taken away,” said Mba who added that the school bus was recovered in Nassarawa state.
Narrating how the bus was snatched, Sunday, the driver of the bus said, “This Morning at about 8:00am, I took the school vehicle out to pick the School children; after picking the kids I dropped the vehicle within the School compound. In the process of washing the vehicle I saw three guys with arms. The first guy held me demanding that I drop the vehicle keys and that any argument will force him to shoot. I complied and they zoomed off with the vehicle, but no child was in the vehicle. They held a pistol and an AK47”.
Folakolade Adetayo, executive director of the school also told journalists that she got a call from the driver of the bus in the morning informing her that the bus had been snatched at gun point by gunmen who stormed the premises.
“What came to my mind was the safety of the children. I asked him to alert the Police and they immediately swung into action. No child was kidnapped as speculated; all the Kids that came to school today have all gone back home. All the Kids are safe; it is only the vehicle that was taken away,” she said.