The Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, has promised adequate support for the security of lives and property of students of Federal Unity Colleges and other schools in the country.
Adamu gave the promised in Abuja on Monday at the inauguration of the Central Planning Committee on Security Education and Awareness Campaign for Principals and Teachers of Federal Government Colleges.
Adamu said that over the past decade, Nigeria had grown more insecure, largely due to ethno-religious crisis and Boko Haram insurgency in the north, cultism and ritual killings in the south.
He said that it was worrisome as the educational institutions had become targets of insurgents.
He said: “School security is vital to effective teaching and learning. Presently, the safety of the school child is of primary concern to stakeholders in the education sector.
“In different parts of the country, the country, communal and ethnic crisis erupted and hindered the smooth functioning of schools.”
The minister added that insecurity in schools was not a problem unique to Nigeria alone, adding that the difference was on how to effectively manage the threats.
He, however, called for partnership from stakeholders to curb the rising security challenges in schools.
He said the ministry had also approved the proposal of Security Awareness and Justice Foundation, an NGO, to organise a training programme for principals and teachers on how to deal with security challenges in schools.
He added that a committee with membership from departments responsible for management of unity schools and the NGO was set up to look for ways to address the security challenges in schools.
Mike Okiro, Former Inspector General of police and the chairman of the committee, said the teenagers had been the most affected in the recurring violence and crisis in the country.
He said proper security awareness by principals and teachers would help to combat most of the problems in the schools.
Okiro said: “Like every well-meaning Nigerian, our foundation feels greatly concerned about this untoward situation.
“Our focus on this project shall be on children, to whom we remain committed.
“We have resolved to collaborate with the government in raising the quality of life of every child, regardless of ethnic, creed or circumstance to achieve their full potential without fear of security attacks on their schools. ”
Okiro, however, said the principals and teachers would be required to go back to their various schools to impact the knowledge they have acquired.