Tears, relief as freed Kaduna Baptist school students reunite with parents

The 15 students of Bethel Baptist High School, Damishi, Kaduna, released by bandits on Saturday have reunited with their parents.

The children, who appeared frail, weak and malnourished, reconnected with their families amid tears on Sunday.

The parents were prevented from speaking with journalists by officials of the Baptist church.

Israel Akanji, president of the Nigerian Baptist Convention, said 63 of the students are still in captivity.

“Although the number was smaller than what we were expecting because we had 78 children out there. They had earlier given us 15, that means 63 to come,” he said.

“But in everything, God said we should give thanks and we are giving thanks for what he has done. We are trusting that the same God who has brought these 15 out is going to help us to receive the other 63.

“We have great hope in God, we will keep praying and asking God for help.”

Ishaya Jangado, president of the Kaduna Baptist Conference and proprietor of the school, clarified the mix-up in the number of students still being held by the bandits.

“Between the time 28 of the students were released on July 25 and now, some of them escaped,” he said.

“That is why the figures did not tally with what we told you earlier.”

When TheCable asked him to comment on reports that N50 million was paid as ransom for the release of the students, he declined to divulge information on it.

“I don’t know anything about that but what I know is that the bandits are asking us to give them something,” he said.

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