Abducted students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka, Kaduna State were released on Wednesday after spending fifty-five days in the kidnappers’ den.
According to sources that spoke with Daily Trust, the twenty-seven students were released around Kidandan in the Giwa Local Government Area of the state after a ransom of about N15 million was paid to the bandits and a convict was released.
It was gathered that the bandits failed to release the students even after the ransom was paid because the bandits insisted on the release of one of their own arrested by the police.
The bandit member who was identified as Laulu was moved to Kaduna from a police facility in Kano on Tuesday ahead of the prisoner swap.
The negotiations suffered setbacks after the abductor, known as Buderu, reneged on his promise even after payment of the agreed sum.
It was disclosed that the father of one Buhari also known as General, who is also a bandit had to be brought in to use his son in forcing Baderu to agree on the deal.
Buderu, however, insisted that if no more money was not paid, his relative who was arrested at Falgore Forest in Kano State must be released.
The negotiations were facilitated by the Sheikh Ahmed Gumi dialogue committee with support from former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
Obasanjo and Gumi have had at least two meetings over banditry ravaging the northern part of the country and spate of abductions in the recent past.
Gumi had led a team to Obasanjo’s residence in Abeokuta in April and the former leader hosted Gumi and his team to an iftar (breaking of fast) dinner in Abuja, last month.
The negotiators, it was learned, reached out to the federal government to approve the release of Laulu, identified as a “repentant cattle rustler who was lured and arrested by vigilantes”.
However, contrary to information earlier, that 39 students were abducted, it was revealed yesterday that 38 students had been abducted before one escaped a day after while the bandits later released 10 of the victims on April 5 and 8 after about N17 million was paid.
Source: Naija News