One of the parents of the kidnapped students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka, Kaduna State, has narrated how parents of the abductees paid N800,000 to a certain “Fulani man” they were linked to by Shikh Gumi, in their bid to secure the release of their children.
The woman made the disclosure on Tuesday when parents and relatives of the abductees protested in front of the National Assembly.
The students, around 30, from the school were abducted on March 11 by armed bandits.
In a video by RootsTV, one of the mothers of the kidnapped students can be seen saying: “We had been going for several committee meetings; we were taken to meet Sheikh Gumi for a meeting. We were directed to a man called Ahmed who invited a Fulani man whom they gave N800,000. The money, we were told, was just for transport.
“I cried, I told him I am a widow and I don’t have a husband, I am just training this boy to help me tomorrow. I begged him and he said it was none of his business. We tried to begging and he said no, until we pay about N500 million,” the woman said.
“They took us to #Gumi‘s house, he directed us to an Ahmed, who invited a Fulani man from #Kaduna, we contributed N800,000 for him, he told us that was just for transport. I cried and pled with him, saying I’m a widow. He said it wasn’t his concern” – Kidnapped Student’s Mother pic.twitter.com/lh5sRxKgAt
— RootsTv (@rootstvnigeria) May 4, 2021
The protest comes more than 50 days after the students were taken into custody by the kidnappers. Another woman said the kidnappers had called her for almost two weeks asking how much the parents were able to raise.
Most of the parents who are widows, petty traders and poor, could however not raise the money and depended on the government to help out.
The woman, also a mother of one of the kidnapped students said, “We told them all we were trying to do was to get the government to assist us. Then he asked us if we were going to abandon our children if the government failed to pay.”
The kidnapper told her they had killed one of the students.
The protests at the National Assembly comes weeks after five students of Greenfield University who were among the 23 abducted students were killed by the kidnappers who demanded a ransom of N800 million. The ransom was reduced to N100 million with an additional demand for 10 brand new Honda motorcycles.
The leader of the kidnappers, Sani Idris Jalingo,, was reported by a local paper to have said on VOA Hausa that they had listened to Kaduna State Governor Nasir el-Rufai’s refusal to pay ransom to any kidnapper, even if it involved his family.
Jalingo said over the radio, “You will use trucks to carry the dead bodies of the remaining students; 17 of the students, 15 females and two males, are with us. The families of the remaining students paid N55 million to us.”
The students of the private university were kidnapped on April 20 just some weeks after 30 students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka, were kidnapped.
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