The Oyo state government on Friday raised the alarm over the fresh method by suspected criminals in Ibadan to abduct school children.
The state government raised the alarm in a circular letter, Ref No: EDU 215 T18/166, from the Office of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and dated October 27, 2021.
In the circular letter signed by the permanent secretary, Mrs. A. B. Atere, titled “Need To Be Security Conscious And Reject Free Rides Offered By Strangers,” to chairmen of TESCOM, SUBEB, executive secretary (BOTAVED), zonal and local inspectors of education, all principals and head-teachers of public and private schools, all private school owners and parents in the state, the government said the criminals “are now dressing in school uniforms to perpetrate their act.”
The government stressed that the warning became necessary in view of a security report on the new method adopted by kidnappers, wearing school uniforms similar to that of the children in their vehicle(s) and they would offer to help unsuspecting school children to their school(s).
It emphasised that as a result of this development, parents and guidance in Ibadan should “sensitise and warn their children and wards to be security conscious by rejecting free rides from strangers.”
Parts of the circular read, “I am to inform you that the Special Services Department (Office of the Executive Governor) has reliably informed the ministry of the new strategy of kidnappers in Ibadan metropolis.
“According to the information, the kidnappers wear a similar uniform as the child (ren) in their car and offer to help unsuspecting school children to their school. Once the innocent children enter the vehicle, they zoom off to an unknown destination.
“Consequent upon the above, all stakeholders are enjoined to sensitise/warn their wards or children under their care on the need to be security conscious and reject free rides offered by strangers.”