Parents of the 15 students of Bethel Baptist High School, Kaduna yesterday were excited as they were reunited with their children who were kidnapped from their boarding school in the early hours of July 5, 2021.
Bandits broke into the school located at Damishi along the Kaduna- Kachia Highway, Chikun Local Government Area of the state and whisked away 121 students.
The kidnappers had released 28 of the students on Sunday, July 25, after receiving N50 million ransoms and later released few others on health grounds, while some escaped on their own.
However, before the release of the latest 15 students on Saturday night, 78 students were remaining with the bandits.
The bandits had thereafter made fresh demand of 80 million ransom to release the remaining 78 students in captivity. It was also gathered that ransom was paid for the release of the 15 students.
Handing the 15 freed and students to their parents at the Baptist Secretariat along Ahmadu Bello Way yesterday, President of Baptist Convention Rev. Israel Akanji said they expected the bandits to release all the remaining 78 students.
Rev. Akanji said: “We are grateful to God for the release of these 15 children. Although, the number is smaller than what we expected because we had 78 out there; they have given us 15, that means 63 to come, but in everything, we should give thanks to God. We are grateful for what He has done. And we trust that the same God will help us to receive the remaining 63. We have great hope in God and we will keep praying and keep asking God for help,” he said.
Though the Baptist Convention President declined to comment on the issue of ransom, a competent source told The Nation that ransom was paid.