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Insecurity: Surrender to criminals, not option -- el-Rufai

…as bandits release video of abducted students, others


Again, Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has insisted that his administration won’t offer ransom to kidnappers, adding that doing that would mean surrendering to criminals.


This was contained in a statement on Tuesday by the Special Adviser to the governor on Media and Communication, Muyiwa Adekeye.


Earlier in the day,  bandits who abducted  students of federal college of forestry mechanisation, Afaka, Kaduna state, released yet another video of the remaining students.


It would be recalled that the hoodlums attacked the school on 11th March this year, when the dust settled,  thirty-nine  students of the school were kidnapped.


Five of the students were released on 5th April. Barely three days after (8th April), another five were also released. Parents of the students have since united themselves seeking ways to free their wards from the dreaded bandits.


In the video released by the bandits, the students appeared calm but exhausted and looking desperate for help.


The video which was recorded in the night also included a newly kidnapped wife of a naval officer who was kidnaped at Agwa, Trikaniya area of Kaduna metropolis.


Most of the students who spoke on the video called for quick negotiations for their release.


Speaking Hausa, one of the female students said; “Our parents please we beg of you, please try your best to come pay for our release, please.”


Another abductee named Yahaya Paul said “…my name is Yahaya Paul from the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, please we are calling on our parents to come and take us out of here, they should try there possible best to see us out of here. Some of us are sick, we have not been eating well. Please parents help us, so that we can come out of this place.”


Another named Benson Emmanuel; “…my name is Benson Emmanuel, please we are begging on our parents to please come and help us out of here, we have stayed here for days, we have not been eating, some us have been sick… please we are calling on our parents… come and help us please, please.”


“…I’m one of the students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, please we are calling on our parents to come and rescue us, we have not been eating, we are all exhausted…” another kidnapped student said.


The wife of the naval officer who spent seventeen days so far with the kidnaped students also begged her husband to make a move for her release.


It would also be recalled that on Monday, the bandits killed two students of a private institution, Greenfield University, in Kaduna, days after three of such students were killed.


However, in a statement titled, ‘Surrender to criminals is not an option- KDSG’ on Tuesday, the governor argued that the payment of ransom has not curbed criminality in the country.


“Several states sought to negotiate their way out of the problems by talking to bandits, paying them money or offering them amnesty. This has not worked and has only encouraged the criminals to press ahead for a surrender of the public treasury to them. That is clearly not in the public interest,” he added.


El-Rufai, however, regretted the recent “kidnaps and killings of students from tertiary institutions in our state, and we sympathise with their families with whom we share the aim of the safe return of all the students. We mourn the dead students and we offer our condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.”


“The ruthless and heartless resort of the kidnappers to murdering these young persons is part of their effort to further their blackmail and compel us to abandon our ‘no-ransom, no-negotiation’ policy. Are people bothering with the consequences of state surrender to hoodlums, or is the continued politicization of security challenges not going to make all of us ultimately victims of the insurgents?


“The fact that criminals seek to hold us by the jugular does not mean we should surrender and create an incentive for more crime. In today’s Nigeria, it has become fashionable to treat the unlawful demands of bandits as worthy of consideration and to lampoon people who insist that outlaws should be crushed and not mollycoddled or availed the resources they can use to unleash further outrages,” he stated.

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