Tag Archives: Nigerianchild

TEACHER BEATS YAHAYA NUHU ALIYU TO DEATH OVER FAILURE TO DO HOMEWORK

Mrs. Dorcas Gibson, a teacher at Federal Government College, Kwali reportedly beat a 13 year-old, J.S.S.2 boarding student for failure to do his homework. Incidentally, the victim of corporal punishment, Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu, Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu was the grandson to the late Aliyu Mohammed, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation. Prior to the teacher’s entry into the class, the deceased had initially gone to the school’s clinic to receive treatment but he could not be attended to on the basis that he had not eaten anything that day. The reason adduced by Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu for failing to do his assignment was that he was indisposed, yet, his teacher would not have his excuse, rather she initially asked the boy to remove weed as a punishment. After the pupil had observed this punishment, she consistently beat him on his head with the metal handle of a bucket until he slumped and died.[1]

The incident occurred during period eight on August 9, 2021. The school, where the incident occurred, Federal Government College, Kwali is located in Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Narrating the incident, one of the classmates of Yahaya said, “During Period 8, Mrs. Gibson entered and requested for assignment submissions. Yahaya and I failed to submit and as a result she ordered us to take out weed. Yahaya had informed the teacher he was ill and didn’t do the assignment. Nevertheless, she ordered us to clear the weeds, after which we returned to class. His head was resting on the desk due to the illness but she severely beat him on the head with a metal bucket handle  until he passed out.”

After the teacher left the class, Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu put his head on the table and remained still. This attracted the attention of his colleagues who called for assistance from the school authorities. He was taken to Rema Clinic where he was confirmed dead. This sparked off reactions from his classmates who took to the school’s premises in protest. Although the school (Federal Government College, Kwali) initially denied responsibility, by insisting that Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu died of malaria, a meeting was convened on August 11 and 13 where the school owned up. The school also begged the parents of the late Yahaya Nuhu Aliyu to forgive and forget, insisting that fact finding would only lead to displeasure.

Reacting to the incident, spokesperson of Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Goong, noted that the ministry had visited the parents of the victim of corporal punishment and had inaugurated a committee to investigate the alleged murder.[2] In a similar vein, Engineer, Musa Ibrahim, the National President of Federal Government Kwali Old Students Association (FEDGOKOSA) acknowledges the severity of the incident, noting further that it had the capacity to smear the good name and image of the school. He also promised to leave no stone unturned in ensuring that justice is done to all the parties concerned. In his words, “Since Sunday night up till this moment, it’s been calls, consultations, clarifications with different personalities ranging from the Father, Principal, deceased relatives and the list goes on, all these geared towards unraveling the fact on what caused the demise of our son, which has also smeared the integrity of our dear school… Be assured of NEC’s resolve to ensure that justice is done to our Son, his father and FGC Kwali that we rightly cherish.”[3] There has however been no publicized report from the Ministry of Education and the alumni association of the school.

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The incidence however calls for a revisiting of the posture of the Nigerian legal system to corporal punishment. Chapter 25 of the Nigerian Criminal Code provides thus:

            “A blow or other force, not in any case extending to a wound or grievous harm, may be justified for the purpose of correction as follows….a father or mother may correct his or her legitimate or illegitimate child, being under sixteen years of age, or any guardian or person acting as a guardian, his ward, being under sixteen years of age, for misconduct or disobedience to any lawful command….[and] may delegate to any person whom he or she entrusts permanently or temporarily with the governance or custody of his or her child or ward all his or her own authority for correction, including the power to determine in what cases correction ought to be inflicted; and such a delegation shall be presumed, except in so far as it may be expressly withheld, in the case of a schoolmaster or a person acting as a schoolmaster, in respect of a child or ward.”

This provision certainly gives impetus to caregivers and school teachers to inflict corporal punishment on children and there is a need for it to be expunged. This is because it is difficult to control and curtail the passion that comes with the infliction of harm on young children once the action of corporal punishment has been set in motion. In most cases, the damage done to young people as in the case of Nuhu Aliyu above is clearly disproportionate and irreparable. A clear abolition of corporal punishment is what is advocated for to further save innocent souls like Nuhu Aliyu. Doing this will shift Nigeria into the categories of countries who have fully protected children from corporal punishment which instills fear. Presently, only 8% of African children have been fully protected from corporal punishment.[4]

REFERENCES

Abass Latifat, “Teacher Beats Student to Death over Homework” blackboxnigeria.com/teacher-beats-student-to-death-over-homework accessed on September 18, 2021

Adekunle Dada, “Teacher Reportedly Beats Student to Death in Abuja” Within Nigeria News; www.withinnigerua.com/news/2021/08/16/teacher-reportedly-beats-student-to-death-in-/abuja/amp>accessed on 18 September 2021

Grace Udofia, “Teacher Beats 13-Year-Old Student to Death in Abuja”; http://www.the heritagetimes.com/teacher-beats-13-year-old-student-to-death-in-abuja/ accessed on September 18, 2021

Kess Ewubare, “FG Reacts to Alleged Beating of Student to Death in Abuja” Legit; legit.ng/1430161/-fg-reacts-to-alleged-beating-of-student-to-death-in-abuja.html> accessed on September 18, 2021

Sahara Reporters, New York, “13-Year-Old Abuja Schoolboy Dies After Flogging By Teacher” www.saharareporters.com/2021/08/17/13-year-old-abuja-schoolboy-dies-after-flogging-by-teacher> accessed on September 18, 2021


[1] Adekunle Dada, “Teacher Reportedly Beats Student to Death in Abuja” Within Nigeria News; www.withinnigerua.com/news/2021/08/16/teacher-reportedly-beats-student-to-death-in-/abuja/amp

[2] Kess Ewubare, “FG Reacts to Alleged Beating of Student to Death in Abuja” (August 19, 2021) Legit; legit.ng/1430161/-fg-reacts-to-alleged-beating-of-student-to-death-in-abuja.html

[3] Sahara Reporters, New York, “13-Year-Old Abuja Schoolboy Dies After Flogging By Teacher” (August 17, 2021) http://www.saharareporters.com/2021/08/17/13-year-old-abuja-schoolboy-dies-after-flogging-by-teacher

[4] Global Initiative to End all Corporal Punishment of Children (October 2015); “Prohibiting all Corporal Punishment of Children in Africa: Progress and Delay; www.endcorporalpunishment.org page 8


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The death of a 14-year-old schoolgirl in Abuja

How sad is it to know that Miss Keren-Happuch Akpagher, a 14-year-old student of Premiere Academy, Lugbe, Abuja died after a used condom was found in her on the 22nd of June, 2021.

The school matron, Mrs Grace Salami said “she was diabetic, sedated, tied on both hands and feet before death”. Therefore, she disagreed to the claim made by Akpagher family and said “condom is latex and it is not supposed to decay, and if it has been in her private part for days, the sperm cells should not be found in her urine”. This was said during her conversation with Vanguard.

The Principal said “No stone will be left unturned to arrest the perpetrators”

According to her friends, she couldn’t walk from the hostel to class and her friends helped her to write her test.

Keren-Happuch Akpagher mother told punch media that she called the principal to request the pick up of her daughter but she was discouraged after the principal told her that her daughter will need to isolate for 5 days when she returns. she said “I felt I should go home since the school said they could take care of her”. Her daughter called her back insisting on leaving the school as she has her reasons. So, Mrs. Akpagher went back to the school and Karen Akpagher was rushed to a private clinic called Queens Hospital in Wuse Zone 6, Abuja. According to the doctors and medical tests done, the discharge from Karen’s vagina was discovered to be a condom and her urine test was dead spermatozoa. After 2 days, Keren died and the death was as a result of hyperglycemia triggered by sepsis due to the condom found in her vagina.

The believe of Keren’s family is that Keren was sexually abused and her mother is demanding justice which the school is supportive about it and the case is been investigated by the police. However, the school matron does not believe she was sexually abused.

This is a really sorrowful news, we hope the investigation goes well and pray for justice if she was truly sexually abused.

That loophole in protecting a Nigerian child.

A Nigerian child is basically protected by the Child’s Right Act 2003 and Children and Young Persons Act. The laws seek to protect the child on every aspect of his life ranging from birth, survival, development, physical,mental, emotional, health among others.
The Child’s Right Act defines a child as one who is below the age of eighteen years. The implication of this provision of the law is that person who is above the age of seventeen is a adult. The Children and Young persons Act is used in states where the Child’s Right Act.Section 2 of the Children and Young persons act, provides that a child means a person under the age of fourteen years. A young person is a person who has attained the age of fourteen years but is under the age of seventeen.
Also, The Labour Act 1974 is another important piece of legislation for protecting the rights of children. It regulates child labour and protects children from exploitation and abuse .
Even as it seems that with the presence of these laws protecting the Nigerian child, he is secured, the reality is that the opposite is the case. Majority of the children in Nigeria still suffer abuse, used for trade, denied education, child marriage, to mention a few
The major causes of the loophole in these laws are –

Domestication of the laws
In Nigeria, the child’s right act, which was ratified In 1993, after the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991, a Children’s Bill was drafted to implement the principles and Rights and Welfare of the Child in Nigeria. One would assume that the law would be. applicable in all the thirty six(36) states in the country, it is only domesticated in twenty five (25) states. Basically, the Northern states have not adopted CRA but the CYPA on the grounds the provisions of CRA are in conflict with religious and cultural norms. For instance, the CRA is strongly against;
(i)child marriages.
(ii)prohibits marriage to members of an adoptive family.
(iii) It defines a child as anyone below the age of 18( eighteen).
Hence, a person can decide to leave a state where the child marriage is not permitted to where it is.

Enforcement of punishment
The laws provides for various punishment where there is breach of its provisions. For instance, 30(3) of the Child’s Right Act provides that a person who contravenes the provisions of Subsection (1) of this section ( which includes using children to beg for alms,dehumanising children) commits an offence and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of ten years.
Regardless of the provisions are made for punishment, there is disrespect for the laws as there is failure to enforce of the required punishment as a deterrent to curb or discontinue activities that adversely affect a child.The prevalence of child abuse in every form in Nigeria is due to the fact that the penalty has not been enforced effectively. The police and the courts have a role to play in the enforcement of the punishment in the CRA.

Lack of knowledge
It is safe to say that majority of the children in Nigeria are not informed of their rights. Parents, schools and the society at large have failed to let children know their rights,so they could tell if their rights have been tramped on.