Courier sent to deliver the ransom for the release of the abducted pupils of Salihu Tanko Islamiyya School, Tegina, in Rafi local government area of Niger State have been detained by the bandits.
Naija News understands that the sum of ₦30 million was gathered and delivered to the bandits as a ransom for the 156 pupils.
However, the courier sent to deliver the ransom was held back by the terrorist group who claimed that the ransom money was short by N4.6million. According to reports, one Kassimu Tegina was sent to deliver the money through an unnamed negotiator to avoid a repeat of what happened with the N25m earlier paid as ransom which was said to have been given to the wrong bandits.
Kassimu was, however, detained and held captive along with the children until the money was completed.
Speaking about the incident, one of the parents of the abducted pupils told newsmen that “the bandits refused to release the children and also held the man we sent, Kassimu Tegina, with the help of a negotiator. They said the money is less ₦4.6m. They insisted we must complete it, and in addition buy six motorcycles,”
“They said as a punishment we must buy six motorcycles and complete the money. We struggled to raise the N30m and we have exhausted our goodwill to raise the N30m. So, we are confused; they (bandits) are playing on our intelligence. We are going through hell in their hands”, another parent narrated while recounting their awful experience.
On his part, the Head Teacher of the School, Malam Alhassan Garba Abubakar, told reporters that the N30 million was delivered to the bandits but they rejected, held back the courier and made a fresh demand.
“We are yet to see the person we sent with the money and the children,” Abubakar said.
He added: “They demanded six Honda motorcycles that cost N490,000 each. That means we need another N6million with the N4.6 million they claimed was short of the N30 million delivered as the latest ransom,”
Alhassan further said the parents had initially raised N20 million as ransom, a negotiation fee of N5million, making it a total sum of N25 million which was delivered as ransom, but the bandits said it went into the wrong hands.
“They (bandits) said we should bring another N30 million before they can release the pupils. After struggling, we were able to get the money and we sent Kassimu.
“I spoke With them today (yesterday) and they said we should complete the money and make six new motorcycles available to them before they can release them. We are tired; we have resigned to God because we cannot raise any other money again”, the Head Teacher lamented.
Naija News understands that the parents of the abducted pupils had raised N30million through donations from some concerned citizens to complete the money demanded by bandits as a ransom for the release of the school children.
The kidnappers had earlier reduced the ransom they demanded from the parents of the girls to N50million, less than half of the initial N200million ransom they demanded for the release of the pupils. They had reportedly collected N20million but refused to release the school children, saying it went to the wrong set of bandits.
The bandits subsequently asked parents of the pupils to pay N30m but they were able to raise N20m which was collected, but three days later, the bandits after collecting the money refused to release the children.
“They wanted N30m, we raised N20m, we gave them the money only for them to say we only gave them money for recharge cards, now three days after, they refused to release our children,” a parent had said.
Source: Naija News