Once again a school has come under attack in northern Nigeria. According to reports, a suicide bomber disguised in school uniform, detonated a bomb in morning assembly at a school in Potiskum. 47 children were killed, some as young as eleven. This is n …
Once again a school has come under attack in northern Nigeria. According to reports, a suicide bomber disguised in school uniform, detonated a bomb in morning assembly at a school in Potiskum. 47 children were killed, some as young as eleven.
This is not the first time the town of Potiskum has been targeted. In 2013 29 students and one teacher were killed in a boarding school there.
Although no-one has claimed responsibility for the massacre, it seems likely that it is the work of Boko Haram, which has carried out repeated attacks on schools in the north of the country, most recently the mass abduction of girls in Chibok. The government claimed to have negotiated a ceasefire with Boko Haram last month, however it appears that this was a smokescreen. People in Nigeria accuse the government of giving the protection of schools and populations in the north a very low priority.
After the girls were kidnapped, there was a brief flurry of world interest, with celebrities from Michele Obama to David Cameron posting selfies with #bringbackourgirls. Gordon Brown the UN special envoy for education swept into the capital, demanding that security guards be put on the gates of schools – something of a joke in a country where teachers are paid poverty wages and many schools lack even the most basic necessities. Since that time however, the attention of the great and the good has moved on, the girls still have not been found and armed groups with murderous agendas continue to massacre children and teachers.
None of this stops oil companies like Shell and BP enriching themselves, their shareholders and political elites in the country, even as they sow social havoc and environmental pollution. Meanwhile children and teachers continue to work bravely and in impossible and dangerous conditions.
This website sends its solidarity and deep sympathy to the families, friends and teachers of the children of Potiskum.
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