Two months after their abduction, the Federal Government has been given an ultimatum of seven days by terrorists to enter into meaningful dialogue over the kidnapped victims of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack, otherwise, they would be killed. However, the terrorists said negotiation with the government would not be centered on money.
The terrorists, who contacted the spokesman of Sheikh Ahmed Mahmud Gumi, Malam Tukur Mamu, on phone, said Mamu is the only person they can trust in the media and urged him to convey their message, exactly as stated, to the Federal Government, families of the victims and Nigerians in general.
In telephone conversations with Mamu, the abductors said the Federal Government has contacted them on how to secure the release of the abducted passengers but there seems to be insincerity on the part of the government putting their lives at risk.
The terrorists added that the Federal Government suspended the resumption of the train service because of their threats.
“We don’t need money. We have a good reason for doing what we did. Until our demands are met, none of the victims will come out alive even if it means we will all die with them. They are well taken care of as you can see from the pictures we sent to you via WhatsApp but we assure you that this will not continue.”
Besides, the leader of the team, who simply gave his name to Mamu as Abu Barra, stated that “it’s been two months since the abduction and anything can happen to the abducted passengers henceforth.”
The terrorists who claimed that some of their children and relations were under arrest said, “before any continued discussion on the release of these passengers and a safe resumption of the train service, our children must be released unconditionally.
“Only then will we release some of the abducted victims, especially the women, while other passengers will be released on a prisoner exchange with some of our arrested comrades by the government.”
Barra explained that they decided to come to a GSM-enabled location with one of the female victims to talk to Mamu as a confirmation of their claims.
Mamu said he could hear her cries with a very low voice that probably indicated exhaustion pleading with him to talk to the government on their behalf for a swift intervention on their release.
Leader of the abductors warned that, if within seven days the government does not respond to their demands, they will stop feeding the victims and will start slaughtering them one after the other.
“And if the government doesn’t respond after that, then Nigerians should forget using the Abuja-Kaduna rail line as well as the Kaduna-Abuja highway. We rely on you and urged you to convey this important message to everyone,” Barra stressed.