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Saturday, 28 September 2019

In Kaduna: Mothers of freed kids in slave school’s harsh methods, torture


In a move that could be described as startling, some parents of the freed 300 male children allegedly chained, tortured and sexually assaulted at an Islamic school in Kaduna have protested against the police for putting their children in protective custody.

The protesters, mostly women and who openly backed the operators of the school and their methods, asked the police to release their children immediately.

They insisted the allegation by the police that the children were being sexually abused at the Islamic school was false.

Some of the mothers said there was nothing wrong with the Islamic school, wondering why the police decided to raid it.

The Kaduna State Command of the Police had on Thursday raided the Islamic school located in Rigasa, Igabi Local Government Area of the state, freeing 300 male children in the process.

The police said some of the victims were from Burkina Faso, Mali and other African countries, adding that the students confessed to have been abused homosexually.

Some other victims were said to have been subjected to daily recitation of the Holy Quran and prayers with torture.

Some of the boys and men were said to have been held captive for years inside what could be described as a ‘building of horrors’, which was advertised as an Islamic school.

Some of the victims, as young as five years old, said they were tortured, sexually abused and starved and  while being prevented from escaping.

Many of them had metal chains around their ankles and visible injuries.

One of those who were saved by the police alleged that some victims had died.

The police arrested seven teachers of the Islamic centre, including its proprietor, Mallam Ismaila Abubakar, who insisted all they did at the centre was the teaching of Islam.

However, on Friday, some mothers of the freed children protested against the police, saying they wanted their children reunited with them.

One of them, Maryam Fatika, whose four children attended the centre, said there was nothing wrong with the school, wondering why the police decided to raid it.

According to her, none of her children had ever complained of any form of maltreatment.

Another woman, who identified herself as Mama Jibril, said her son had spent six years at the centre.

According to her, there is nothing wrong with the centre.

She said she sent her son to the centre because “Jibril was becoming a threat to the family.”

She said, “We took him to the Islamiyya school for rehabilitation and to God be the glory, he has changed.

Shafa’atu Zakari, who said she had six children in the school, said the children were drug addicts and uncontrollable.

She said,  “That’s why we took them to the school to acquire Quranic knowledge.

Some residents of the area where the centre is located also claimed some of the students were drug addicts.

Ahmed Balarabe, who lives close to the school, denied the children were being sexually abused.
(Punch)

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