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‘We lost the best and brightest,’ says principal


The seven students and a driver that died in an auto crash on the Ibadan-Oyo expressway on Tuesday were yesterday buried in Kano.

The victims were lowered to eternal rest in separate graves next to each other at Tarauni Cemetery in the city center at about 10a.m. amidst wailing and unrestrained agony from hundreds of sympathizers.

Funeral prayers according to Islamic rite, led by the Chief Imam of Kano, Prof. Sani Zaharadden, were earlier conducted for the repose of the deceased at the Emir’s palace, with members of the Emirate Council, Governor Abdullah Umar Ganduje, members of the state executive council, parents, relatives of the students and sympathizers in attendance.

The remains of the students, who went to represent the state at a national quiz competition in Lagos, arrived Kano on Wednesday evening.

The deceased include Umar Musa SS1, Yusuf Danladi SS1, Ibrahim Sani JSS3 and Sani Musa JSS2, all students of Unity Secondary School, Karaye.

Others are Abubakar Abdullahi SS1, Kamaludeen Muhamad SS1 and Ahmad Faisa Adamu JSS2, who were students from Kano Capital School.

It was gathered that 21 students from Kano Capital School, Unity Secondary School, Karaye and GGSS, Maikatashi along with four teachers left Kano on Sunday May 1, to attend the competition held on Monday. They left Lagos the next day (Tuesday) about 6a.m. before the accident occurred on Ibadan-Oyo road at about 11.30a.m.

One of the coordinators who survived the accident, Usman Danladi, told The Guardian that the unfortunate incident occurred when the front tyre of the 18-seater bus burst. “We were in the bus carrying the female students while the other bus conveying the boys was ahead of us.

“We noticed that one of the tyres burst in motion, but in an attempt to control the situation, I think the driver lost full control and summersaulted. The driver and seven students died instantly, two people were unconscious and about five others were rushed to University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan. Later another person died.”

Principal of Kano Capital, Kabiru Zakari Kofar-Mata, said he was still in shock over the incident. “My students are disciplined and one of the best in Kano. They always triumph in any competition they participate in. We are so devastated with the loss.

“In particular, one of the affected students, Ahmad Faisa Adamu, who came first in Lagos, was the best in the zonal tournament held in Kano and he would have been in France later in the year to represent Nigeria. The 13-year-old was a very talented boy but we can only pray that almighty God grant them paradise.”

Mallam Yusuf Muhammad, principal of Unity Secondary School, was also short of words at the loss. He said the students “would forever be remembered for their brilliance and discipline.”

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