Government behind us, bandits tell parents of kidnapped students of Greenfield University

May 30, 2021
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The 16 abducted students and staff of Greenfield University, Kasarami, Chikun local government of Kaduna state have been released after 39 days in captivity. 

Bandits stormed Greenfield University on April 20th, 2021 killing a gateman for attempting to shut the game against them, before kidnapping 19 students and three female staff of the university. Five of the students were later killed by the bandits, before parents of one of them paid some ransom to secure his freedom. 

The remaining three female staff and 13 students were released Saturday afternoon near Ollam Farms along Kaduna – Abuja highway after the payment of an unspecified amount as ransom by the parents. The freed captives were taken over by some security men around the Ollam Farms ostensibly to hand them over to the police authorities. 
But this infuriated the angry parents who broke into Ollam Farms to pick their children and wives. They lamented what they described as federal and state governments’ nonchalant attitude to the safe release of the students and staff. 

According to the parents despite several pleas and appeals, neither Kaduna state government nor security agents made efforts to secure their release. Adding that they had to sell their assets and valuables to secure the release of their children and wives.  
The students and staff who were looking unkept, traumatic and in poor state of health were later reunited with their parents and families at Reg View Hotel, Television Garage near Command junction, Chikun local government area of Kaduna state in an emotional reunion amidst jubilation and sobs. 
One of the abducted but freed staff, Mrs Bassey expressed appreciation to God that they were returned safely and reunited with their families. She said the bandits took good care of them and gave them normal food.
“I give God all the glory that we returned safely. They tried in taking care of us. We are eating normally,” he said.

Speaking on what the release of his daughter meant to him and his family, Mr Bassey Bassey said it was a day of joy and happiness for them. “After 40 days of trauma, trouble, confusion, disappointment that the future of Nigeria, children of Nigeria were kidnapped we are very happy that we see them again alive. 
“But it is disappointing that government of Nigeria both state and federal could not lift a finger to secure their release. No government show any intention to help. It was we the parents that rallied round to ensure that the students were released.
“We paid huge amount of money to secure their release, the people collected a number of motorbikes which we have to give because our destiny was tied up.  
“There was no effort, no fight by government or security agencies to get them freed. We suffered, sold all our properties to rescue our children. No government, no security agencies that came to help us. It is shameful that those who did not contribute anything came out to take the glory. 
“Now is not a time to take that decision of returning our child back to that school. The school authority tried well. We will take that decision later.”

Also speaking, Mr Chukwuemeka Lawrence, husband to one of the freed staff, said, “we paid ransom before they were released. After the kidnappers called us and told us that government is behind them, that government  knows what they are doing, and that we shouldn’t tell government what we are doing that we should look for more money. 
“We begged them but they refused to listen to our pleas. We sold houses, two people went to pay N10 million each as they were demanding for more money, government who promised that they would help us deserted us.”

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