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General News of Friday, 7 May 2021


Losing few students as collateral damage is better than paying ransom to bandits - El-Rufai

Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai

Governor Nasir El-Rufai has revealed plans that was supposed to be carried out to rescue the abducted students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka in Kaduna State.

According to him, the strategy put in place was to attack the hideout of the bandits, lose a few students but ensure all bandits are killed.

He made this known on Thursday, May 6, 2021, during a webinar organised by the Africa Leadership Group.

Whiles responding to a question raised on why he refused to negotiate with the bandits, he noted that a rescue plan had been drawn but before the rescue plan could be carried out, the bandits slipped through the cordon of the army.

Adding that paying ransom to the kidnappers has not solved any problem in the country, therefore, he would rather attack and gets possible collateral damage than pay ransom.

He said;

“Two days after the abduction of the Afaka young people, I was assured by the air force and the army that they knew where the kidnappers were with the students and they had encircled (them).

“We were going to attack them. We would lose a few students but we would kill all the bandits and we would recover some of the students. That was our plan. That was the plan of the air force and the army… But they slipped through the cordon of the army. That is why they were not attacked.

“We know it is risky, we know in the process we may lose some of the abductees but it is a price we have to pay. This is war, there will always be collateral damage in war and we will rather do that than pay money because paying money has not solved the problem anywhere in the world.”

The Governor noted that since the insecurity issues began in Kaduna he has had sleepless nights, although the situation in Kaduna is not as bad as other states.

El-Rufai indicated that the media has failed to project happening in other states but chose to focus more on his state because it fitted into the narrative of ethnic clashes.

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