HighlightTop StoryTrending Story

317 abducted schoolgirls finally let off the hook, says Zamfara governor

174

 

Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara said on Tuesday that no ransom was paid to abductors of the 317 students of Government Girls Secondary School Jangebe in the state to secure their release.

“Kidnappers have released all the girls abducted from the school’s hostel.

“Today, we have received the children who were under captivity since Friday. I initiated a peace accord which yielded a positive result.

“No ransom was paid to anyone. I insisted that we were not going to give anything to any of them,” he said.

Matawalle disclosed that the total number of kidnapped students was 279.

On Friday, police had said 317 girls were abducted in the raid by more than 100 gunmen.

The governor said the students were being taken to a health facility for medical examination.

A spokesman for the government, Mr Sulaiman Tanau Anka said some of the missing girls had run into the bush at the time of the assault, confirming the number of those kidnapped was 279.

Government officials had been in talks with the kidnappers – known as “bandits” – following Nigeria’s third school attack in less than three months.

State Police Commissioner Abutu Yaro attributed their release to a successful government-led peace process.

Parents wept uncontrollably at the sight of their children.

“There was a huge amount of relief for the parents, students and the state government. Authorities told us it was difficult to secure the release.

“It took days of negotiations with what the government calls repentant bandits to bring the girls back. Some of the girls are less than 11 years old,” a parent said.

In a Tweet, President Muhammadu Buhari said he felt “overwhelming joy” over the release of the schoolgirls unharmed.

Heavily armed criminal gangs in northwest and central Nigeria have stepped up attacks in recent years, kidnapping for ransom, raping and pillaging.

The Nigerian military deployed to the area in 2016 and a peace deal with bandits was signed in 2019 but attacks have continued.

In December, more than 300 boys were kidnapped from a school in Kankara, in President Muhammadu Buhari’s home state of Katsina, while he was visiting the region.

The boys were later released but the incident triggered outrage and memories of the kidnappings of 276 schoolgirls by Boko Haram in Chibok that shocked the world.

Many of those girls are still missing.

The gangs are largely driven by financial motives and have no known ideological leanings.

But there are concerns they are being infiltrated by rebel groups.

Kidnapping for ransom in Africa’s most populous country is already a widespread national problem, with businessmen, officials and citizens snatched from the streets by criminals looking for ransom money.

At least $11m was paid to kidnappers between January 2016 and March 2020, according to SB Morgen, a Lagos-based geopolitical research consultancy.

Leave a comment

Related Articles

NSSF targets training of 1 million youths on healthcare advocacy by 2029.

By 2029, the Nigerian Solidarity Support Fund (NSSF) says it is set...

Gunmen allegedly attack Shaibu, Sen. Okpebholo’s convoy in Benin, orderly killed

Gunmen have reportedly attacked the convoy of the All Progressives Congress candidate...

Updated: Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage, labour leaders laud president’s ‘fatherly gesture’

President Bola Tinubu’s approval of a new national minimum wage of N70,000,...

Just in: Tinubu to ministers: Pay off varsities staff members’ 4-month salary arrears

President Bola Tinubu has directed the Minister of Finance, Mr. Wale Edun,...

Russian war: King Charles III says UK govt will give full support to Ukraine, wants it to join NATO

Shine Alagba King Charles III said the UK government would continue to...

Breaking: Pres.Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage

President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for...

Food inflation: Reps pledge N648m, being 50% of six-month salaries, to provide succour for the poor

The House of Representatives unanimously agreed to sacrifice 50 percent of their...

Updated: FG backtracks, postpones minimum admission age for varsities, others until 2025

Prof. Tahir Mamman, the Minister of Education, backtracked on the decision to...

Stakeholders reject proposal to raise university, polytechnic admission age to 18 years

Participants at the 2024 Joint Admissions Matriculation Board’s (JAMB) policy meeting on...

Breaking: FG sets 18 years as minimum admission age into tertiary institutions

The Federal Government has fixed the minimum age for entry into universities...

FG set introduce new curriculum for secondary schools nationwide

The Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman, announced on Thursday plans to...

Climate change strikes close to home: Lagos Govt warns of looming floods

The Lagos State Government has issued a warning to residents of impending...

Police block SSANU, NASU protests in Abuja over unpaid four-month salaries

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Command of the Nigeria Police on Thursday...

Building collapse: Nigeria reports 22 incidents, 33 fatalities in 7 months – COREN

The Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) has reported...

Updated: Tinubu launches Education Loan Fund, hopeful initiative will curb terrorism, banditry

In fulfillment of one of his campaign promises, President Bola Tinubu on...

Pres. Tinubu appoints Mrs. Didi Walson-Jack as new Head of Service

President Bola Tinubu has approved the appointment of Mrs. Didi Esther Walson-Jack,...

Reps pass NDDC’s budget of N1.91trn

The House of Representatives on Wednesday approved the Niger Delta Development Commission’s...

Court refuses stay of proceeding in Yahaya Bello’s case, fixes Sept. 25 for arraignment

Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court in Abuja has adjourned...

Breaking: Yahaya Bello: Judge walks out of court as two SANs clash

A heated argument between two senior lawyers on Wednesday disrupted the court...

Breaking: Tinubu approves kick off of student loan scheme, inaugurates committee

Following amendments to the Student Loan Scheme bill, President Bola Tinubu has...