A reliable source has revealed why the Boko Haram insurgents are refusing to let go Leah Sharibu, the only Christian among the 110 girls kidnapped by the group in February 2018 from their hostel in Dapchi, a town in North-east Nigeria.
While majority of the girls were released a month after, Leah sharibu was not because she refused to accept Islam, resisting the entreaties of her classmates to pretend to do so, her parents learned from snatched conversation with her friends.
Five were killed, possibly trampled to death in the overcrowded trucks as they were being abducted.
According to the source who craved for anonymity, there was a spirited attempt by the Federal Government acting through third parties to pay a ransom in a bid to secure the release of Leah Sharibu, but her abductors who had made the financial demand backed out when payment was offered.
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While the channels of communication between top security agents of the government, third parties and the terrorists at times take more than a month to complete one line of messages back and forth, the FG reached an agreement after such a long communication procedure only to be turned back after an agreement.
The source revealed that the insurgents backed out of the negotiation for her release because they hoped to use her abduction to rankle religious passion and possibly cause a religious war in the country if they could.
According to a government source, “while the FG remains strongly committed to securing the release of Leah and all other identified and unidentified abductees, by any means necessary, the terrorists chose much earlier after Leah’s abduction to use her to fan religious embers and cause devastating division in the country. And that was why the terrorists rejected the ransom government security agencies prepared to pay for Leah’s release.”
The source explained further that top presidential officials still encouraged FG officials to remain actively engaged with the channels of communication and the negotiators until a positive resolution is reached “because the President has set a firm target and resolve to ensure the freedom of Leah and others by any means necessary.”
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