Kagara’s schoolchildren are kidnapped, others can reclaim their freedom today
An influential Islamic cleric, Sheikh Abubakar Gumi, said on Saturday that the kidnapped Kagara schoolchildren could be released today.
Uniformed thugs raided the State College of Science in Kagar, Niger at about 2 a.m. Wednesday and carried away 27 students and 15 staff after the assassination of a senior high school student 3.
The incident sparked unrest across the country and raised concerns about the safety of kidnapped students and school personnel who were dragged into the bushes by the gunmen.
In an interview Saturday, Gumi, who was negotiating with the thugs in the woods, told the Sunday PUNCH that there is a chance the kidnapped could regain their freedom today, given the ongoing negotiations between the government and the thugs.
A priest who recently interviewed some bandits in the forests of Zamfara State and subsequently asked for amnesty for the bandits, told one of our reporters that negotiations to release the students and staff were slow. due to logistics.
According to Gumi, the deal does not provide for the payment of the ransom.
On Saturday, in a telephone conversation with one of our correspondents, Gumi said:
“I heard from (our contact) that they are still negotiating to release them (students and staff) and hopefully, hopefully, get them today (Sunday), hopefully.
“So far, they have not been able to identify the boys who (kidnapped). You know these are scattered groups. Therefore, when you deal with such groups on a large territory, without communications, without roads, then it must be slow. But the main characters are ready to negotiate and stop the kidnapping altogether. “
When asked if there was a money deal,
Gumi said, “No, no; This is not true. If it’s money, it means the crime itself.
They say that these are our conditions, and we will stop it. So, negotiations are underway and their requests are being studied, which is very simple. “
According to Gumi, the bandits basically ask the state to transfer their comrades to the custody of the security forces.
He explained: “They have only four people in custody and they are asking for them.
They also need guarantees, so we ask for amnesty for them.
They have been fighting for a long time; more than eight years have passed.
“These people are fighting for their existence, because when they go to the city, they are lynched, when the police see them on the street, they arrest them; sometimes they are executed out of court, so they took up arms against the state.
When you give them amnesty, everyone will drop their weapons. “