The Niger State government says it has arrested some of the bandits who abducted students of the Salihu Tanko Islamiyyan School, Tegina in the Rafi Local Government Area of the state.
SaharaReporters had reported how gunmen on Sunday stormed the police station in the town and went round shooting sporadically into the air to scare residents before breaking into the private school where they abducted over 100 children attending Islamic lectures.
The school, which consists of nursery and primary arms, also hosts Islamiyya students in the evening and at weekends.
Tegina is the hometown of the local government chairperson, Isma’il Moddibo. It is in the same local government area with Kagara where bandits earlier this year abducted many students but later released them after negotiation with the state government.
Speaking on Tuesday, deputy governor of the state, Alhaji Ahmed Ketso said “some of the bandits are in our custody.”
Ketso, who didn’t state the number of bandits arrested, also said security agents were already on the trail of the rest of the bandits with a view to rescuing the children.
The deputy governor, however, ruled out payment of any ransom but assured that the abducted children would be rescued the same way the Kagara Science College boys were rescued.
“We don’t pay ransom to abductors. We are trying to negotiate to see how we can bring them back safely.
“But first of all, we are trying to get in touch with the parents of those abducted because some of them came from other states to acquire the Islamic education. The government does not know their parents or where they came from.
“We are still taking the census of the children to know the exact number that were actually abducted. Nevertheless, the government will do everything possible to ensure their safe rescue,” he said.