Turkey's Maarif Foundation has continued to take over schools formerly run by the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) across Africa, in an attempt to eliminate the terror group's lobby and influence in the continent.
In an interview with Anadolu Agency (AA) Tuesday, Dr. Hasan Yavuz, a member of the board of directors at the Maarif Foundation, said the negotiations to take over all FETÖ-linked schools continue while claiming the foundation has substantially eliminated the terror group's lobbying power in Africa.
Maarif Foundation is the only institution authorized to open schools on behalf of Turkey abroad. It has been tasked to take over FETÖ operated schools abroad, following last year's deadly coup attempt.
FETÖ, led by the U.S.-based Fetullah Gülen, orchestrated last year's July 15 coup attempt that killed 250 innocent civilians and injured more than 2,000.
"We have told the Guinean bureaucrats that FETÖ is as dangerous and cowardly as Boko Haram and al-Shabab," Yavuz said adding that Guinea was the first country to handover FETÖ-linked schools to the foundation.
Since his appointment, Yavuz made official visits to 33 countries in the continent and launched the transfer process that followed a "solution-oriented way rather than a colonialist manner."
He revealed that there were FETÖ-linked schools in 36 of 54 countries across the continent, noting the foundation has so far completely taken over the schools in five countries.
Yavuz said they have reached an agreement with 14 other countries while negotiations with seven other countries were in progress regarding the handover.
Guinea transferred nine FETÖ-linked schools with 1,000 students to the foundation.
Eight schools with 1,200 students in Nigeria and three schools with 200 students in Congo were also transferred to the foundation. Five schools in Sudan and two in Somalia were also transferred to the Maarif Foundation.
Meanwhile, 18 schools in Mali, 14 in Cameroon, 14 in Senegal and eight in Burkina Faso will soon be transferred to the foundation.
Eight schools in the Democratic Republic of Congo, three in Mauritania, four each in Chad and Gabon were also getting prepared to be transferred, the official said.
He informed that the foundation has continued its negotiations with some other countries in Africa, where FETÖ has continued to operate.