If you are one of the parents whose children trek to school from home, a new development in Minna, Niger State capital will get you worried.
A new dimension has recently been introduced to hunger-induced crime in Minna, as hungry youths now go about snatching food packs from nursery and primary school children on their way to school.
One Fati Sanusi, a nursery two pupil of Mega Stars Academy, located in Kpakungu, Minna, was said to have cried to school, alleging that her food pack, prepared by her mother was snatched from her by a grown up boy, who ran away even as she cried.
Headmistress of the school, Mrs. Cecilia Bunmi Koseemani, who confirmed the incident exclusively to The Guardian, said she and other teachers had hectic time pleading with the little girl to stop crying.
“We had to send for her mother who prevailed on the four-year-old girl before she stopped crying. The mother later rushed back home to prepare Indomie for her instead of the rice meal that was initially snatched from her.”
Koseemani appealed to parents to try and put their little school children in the care of grown up schoolmates, so as to avoid such things in the future, describing the incident as a reflection of the prevailing hardship in the country.
Several instances of hunger-induced crimes have been reported in Niger State in recent times.
It was reported that a housewife stabbed her rival to death over the modalities for sharing a measure of Gaari (Cassava flour) brought home by their husband. There were other cases of people stealing food still on fire, as well as women collecting food items from sellers in the market and deliberately taking to their heels instead of paying.
When caught, it has always been pleading for leniency and understanding, citing hunger, occasioned by the economic situation in the country as reasons for their actions.