Government Confirms No Ransom Exchanged for Release of Kaduna School Children


On Monday, the Federal Government announced that there was no ransom paid for the release of 137 kidnapped pupils from Kuriga, Chikun Local Government Area, Kaduna State. Mohammed Idris, the Minister of Information and National Orientation, affirmed during a press briefing after the Federal Executive Council meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, that this decision aligns with President’s commitment. He also expressed the President’s gratitude towards the security service for their role in ensuring the safe return of the abducted pupils, with a promise to apprehend and punish those responsible for the abduction. The incident occurred on March 6, when armed individuals on motorcycles abducted the pupils from their school, prompting condemnation from the Presidency and the global community, including UNICEF.

On Sunday, Major General Edward Buba, Director of Defence Media Operations, refuted reports suggesting 287 pupils were rescued, stating that 137 pupils were actually rescued through a collaboration efforts between the military and local authorities in Zamfara State. This rescue occurred in the early hours of Sunday. Concurrently, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, a Kaduna-based Muslim cleric, had offered to engage in dialogue with the terrorists responsible for the abduction of the school children from Kuriga. In response to inquiries regarding the government’s interaction with the cleric, the minister assured that the government remains committed to obtaining any necessary information to address the nation’s challenges, indicating a willingness to explore all avenues for resolution.

“Sheikh Gumi or any other individuals for that matter is not above the law. If you have suggestions that are constructive enough for security agencies to take, they will take it. But if they think that he is also making some statements that appear to be reckless, he will also be reprimanded.

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