[photo: Al Jazeera]
March, 2nd 2021 – A group of nearly 300 girls who were kidnapped from a school in north-western Nigeria last week have been released.
Police say the girls were abducted by unidentified gunmen from their boarding school in Jangebe, Zamfara state.
The state’s governor Bello Matawalle said on Tuesday that the group had been freed and the girls were now safe. He said, “It gladdens my heart to announce the release of the abducted students of GGSS Jangebe from captivity. Our daughters are now safe.”
Such kidnappings are carried out for ransom and are common in the north. Dozens of the girls were seen gathered at a government building in Zamfara after they were taken there in a fleet of mini-buses.
In Nigeria, schools have become the new hunting grounds for kidnappers as cases of abduction in schools have become rampant in the states of Nigeria. Government officials have been in talks with the kidnappers after Nigeria’s third school attack in less than three months.
According to authorities, 317 girls had been abducted in the remote village of Jangebe by hundreds of gunmen. Matawalle however said that 279 female students were abducted. He said, “We thank Allah they are all now with us.”
Like any other state affected by the bandits, State officials in Zamfara have previously signed peace treaties offering money to to the bandits in exchange for the release of the children and their safety.