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Boko Haram kills 600 teachers, razes 512 schools in 12 years

Refugees gather to see U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power as she visits Minawao Refugee Camp in northern Cameroon, Monday, April 18, 2016. Power is visiting Cameroon, Chad, and Nigeria to highlight the growing threat Boko Haram poses to the Lake Chad Basin region. Photo: AP

The Director of School Services, State Universal Basic Education Board Ali Dogo says that Boko Haram insurgents razed 512 schools and killed 600 teachers in Borno state within the past 12 years of insurgency.

Dogo made this known at the launch of EduTrac mobile phone-based data collection system and mainstreaming of psycho-social support into formal education in Borno state in partnership United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF).

In July 2009, the Boko Haram uprising began in Bauchi and spread to other northern states, leaving hundreds of followers, Nigerian law enforcement officers, and civilians dead. The following year, attacks in the Northeast and other parts of the country including bombings, mass shootings, and executions began to rise.

Low levels of education and literacy in northeast Nigeria have been exacerbated by the Boko Haram insurgency. The group has targeted teachers and schools, with more than 910 schools destroyed between 2009 and 2015, and 1,500 forced to close.

He also called on international organisations and donor agencies to support orphans of the slain teachers in areas of education and vocational skills. 

According to UNICEF, the organisation has supported over 300,000 children and youths to access formal and informal education in Borno State. 

UNICEF Education Manager Maiduguri Field Office Paola Ripamonti said 102,000 children have accessed inclusive, equitable and quality education in a safe and protective learning environment in 6 local areas of the state with about 30,000 out-of-school youths and adolescents supported with vocational skills and have been mainstreamed into formal education in their liberated communities. 

“UNICEF piloted this intervention in 10 schools across 6 local government areas in partnership with Borno state Universal Basic Education Board with the support of European Union and other partners” Ripamonti said.

On the EduTrac system, Paola Ripamonti explained that this was a tool aimed at improving quality education and identify bottlenecks at school levels such as absenteeism, student-teacher ratio and overcrowding. 

Reporting by Dauda Iliya; editing by Muzha Kucha and Tina Oyinsan