DAILY FILE – Parents of the kidnapped Kaduna schoolgirls on Tuesday said that their children were never rescued by the police as claimed.
According to the parents, out of the ransom paid, the kidnappers gave the victims transport money to come back to the town.
On October 3, six female pupils, two staff of the Engravers College, Kakau Daji in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State were kidnapped by some gunmen suspected to be kidnappers.
23 days after, the children and the two staff of the school were released on Saturday after allegedly paying a ransom of N13.6m.
However, the police in Kaduna claimed that they rescued the schoolgirls and their teachers following an intelligence report.
The Kaduna Command’s spokesman, DSP Yakubu Sabo had said in a statement on Saturday, “Today being the 26th of October, 2019 at about 0800hrs, teams of Police Operatives attached to Operation Puff Adder Kaduna acted on intelligence and intercepted the kidnapped students and staff of Engravers College Kakau Daji Kaduna at Dutse in Chukun LGA.
“Consequently, all the eight victims of the kidnapping incident of 3rd October 2019 have been rescued unhurt and have been reunited with their respective families by the command.”
However, while addressing journalists on Tuesday, the parents of the students through their spokesman, Mr. Ohemu Fredrick insisted their children were set free by their abductors after meeting the ransom demanded by them (kidnappers).
Frederick failed to disclose the amount paid as ransom but insisted that their children were released after they paid the ransom.
He also singled out a former governor of the state (names withheld) for commendation, saying the former governor neither knew them nor ever met them but that through him and his friends, they were able to raise the ransom paid to the kidnappers.
He also said the former governor also offered the children and the two staff free medical treatment after their ordeal.
He expressed gratitude to all Nigerians irrespective of tribe and religions.
“We appreciate all Nigerians. Several people prayed in churches and mosques. Through their prayers, God brought us help. God used a former governor of Kaduna State to assist us; encouraged us. We thank all Nigerians. We are in celebration mode now.
“But we paid a ransom before their released but we don’t want to state the amount. We paid ransom but all the same, we want to thank the police as well,” he said.
One of the parents who spoke on the condition of anonymity shortly after the press briefing said the police merely gave their children and the two staff a ride after the kidnappers had set them free.
He explained that after the kidnappers had set them (the children and the two staff) free, the police merely picked up the children and dropped them near the Kaduna toll gate, about five kilometres away from the city centre.
“We thank them (police) for giving the children and the two staff a ride.
“What happened was that when the children and the two staff were released, they had no shoes or footwear. So, out of the ransom paid, the kidnappers gave the victims transport money to come back to the town. It was out of that money that the principal crossed over to the other side of the road to buy slippers for the victims. It was at that point that police arrived and offered to give the victims a ride.
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