BusinessDay

Buhari charges security agencies efforts to release abducted passengers

President Muhammadu Buhari has directed security agencies to increase both kinetic and non-kinetic efforts to secure release of remaining kidnapped Abuja – Kaduna train passengers

A statement by Presidential Spokesman, Garba Shehu, said the government continues to review the issue of the kidnapped railway passengers and is making all efforts to trace and bring back the 51 or more still being held in custody.

This is coming about 85 days after the hoodlums attacked the Abuja to Kaduna bound train on March 28, 2022 and took over 970 passengers, including women and children

Eye witness accounts, had revealed that the train was bombed twice before the terrorists opened fire on the passengers.

Upon the President’s approval, the presidency stated that the government is continuing on the two-lane approach, kinetic and non-kinetic to secure the passengers’ safe release.

The kidnappers had made a demand for the release of their own children and upon the settlement of that issue, they let go of eleven of the victims, even though more were expected.

The statement noted that the “setback notwithstanding, the government is not leaving any stone unturned in the efforts to bring all of the hostages back.

“The Defence, Security and Intelligence Agencies have given assurances to intensify operational engagements geared towards securing the rescue of all hostages and restoring peace to all parts of the country.

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“Government is also mindful of the efforts of some patriotic and influential persons and institutions that are helping in securing the safe release of the hostages.

“President Buhari welcomes the return of the recently released passengers back to their families and loved ones, while expressing his solemn commitment to the families of those still in captivity, assuring that there will be no let-up until they are reunited with their families in the shortest time possible.

The President’s clear directive on the issue is that the hostages must be brought home alive.

“The country’s military and security agencies are aware of their duty to the nation and are determined to give effect to the President’s charge with increased urgency,” the statement read.

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