Monday, 11 July 2022

Terrorists Demand N100m From Families Of Each Remaining 43 Kidnapped Train Passengers


Terrorists are demanding a N100m ransom for each of the 43 abducted Kaduna train passengers, who are still in their custody

The demand was communicated to the families of the hostages last week.

This is coming five days after the alleged masterminds of the abduction were freed from the Kuje Medium Security Custodial Centre, Abuja, by scores of armed men on Tuesday.

The Islamic State West Africa Province claimed responsibility for the attack in a viral video 24 hours later.

During the attack, over 300 Boko Haram fighters, convicted criminals and other inmates were released by the terrorists who overwhelmed the security operatives guarding the facility.

The Federal Government on Thursday uploaded to the Interpol database the data of 64 Boko Haram commanders who escaped from custody during the attack.

The PUNCH had reported that the terrorists attacked the Abuja-Kaduna train on March 28, killing eight and kidnapping no fewer than 61 passengers.

As part of their demands, they requested the release of 15 terrorist commanders, their children detained by the military and an undisclosed amount of cash.

On June 12, the terrorists released 11 hostages after 75 days in captivity, while another seven regained their freedom on Saturday.

The victims were reportedly released through the assistance of the Publisher of Kaduna-based Desert Herald newspaper, Mallam Tukur Mamu, who has been negotiating with the militants.

Giving an update on the situation on Sunday, a family member of the abducted victims, who didn’t want his name in print, told one of our correspondents that the terrorists were asking each family to cough up N100m ransom for the release of their loved ones.

The source said the seven victims that were released on Saturday paid an undisclosed amount.

He said, “It is money that is still delaying the release of the others. The terrorists are demanding ransom now. We heard the last set paid money. They (terrorists) have reached out to us as regards the payment of ransom.

“The situation now is that if you have your money, your loved ones would be freed. They have pegged the ransom at N100m. It is just unfortunate.”

Another family member said they were told that the terrorists were no longer interested in negotiating with the Federal Government, saying that N100m was required to free those in captivity.

He said they were still pleading with the terrorists to reduce the ransom as some of them could not afford the huge amount.

He noted, “My loved one has not been released, those that were released paid N100m. I don’t have that kind of money. The kidnappers got in touch with us. They said they were no longer negotiating with the Federal Government. Getting N100m is the dilemma many of us don’t have.”

Meanwhile, the seven persons released by the terrorists have reunited with their families on Saturday evening.

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