An elderly man sent to deliver ransom to secure the release of the abducted students of Salihu Tanko Islamiya School, in Tegina, Rafi Local Government Area of Niger State, has been seized by the kidnappers.
The school was attacked on May 30, by bandits, who kidnapped over 100 schoolchildren.One of the pupils was shot dead while another was seriously injured.
The bandits had demanded N110 million ransom for the kidnapped pupils but later raised the sum to N200 million.
According to BBC, the abducted man, Kasimu Barangana, was among the delegation sent by the victims’ parents who had raised N30 million by “selling land and other possessions” to facilitate the release of their children.
The parents and school administrators were said to have negotiated with the kidnappers and agreed to pay the ransom.
The parents had earlier sent an initial instalment of N25 million ransom, the head of the abducted students’ school, Abubakar Alhassan, told BBC Hausa Service on Sunday morning.
Alhassan said some parents sold off their landed properties and his school sold off a portion of its land to raise the N30 million. They then sent Barangana and six other men to deliver the money in the forest.
According to Alhassan, after the ransom was delivered, the bandits took Barangana to another location to count the money.
He, however, said the kidnappers called to inform the community of the shortfall of N4.6 million and that they were holding on to Barangana until the shortfall is delivered.
“Parents are now resigned to fate. They say they can’t raise any more money. They are now relying on God,” Alhassan told BBC.