Minister of defence, Mohammed Badaru Abubakar, has denied allegation that the federal government was negotiating with Zamfara bandits to release abducted female students of Federal University Gusau.
The minister stated this in reaction to the statement credited to Governor Dauda Lawal of Zamfara State alleging that the federal government was negotiating with the Zamfara terrorists to secure the release of the abducted female students.
He dismissed the claim pointing out that “Federal Government is working assiduously round the clock to ensure that the girls and others return home.”
The minister in a statement by the Acting Director Public Relations Ministry of Defence (MOD) Attari Hope expressed confidence that the joint security task forces working round the clock would get the students rescued.
He said, “The allegation is false and misleading as the ministry has not mandated any body or group to negotiate on behalf of federal government.”
He said President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has given marching order to military and other security agencies to ensure the release of those that were abducted.
He said the order of the president has started yielding result as 13 of the abducted students and three others regained their freedom, adding that this feat was achieved through the professional efforts of the military.
He however empathized with families of the girls and others that were abducted saying: “I share in your pain and strongly condemn this reprehensible act carried out by suspected bandits.”
The minister reassured Zamfara people and Nigerians of the progress being made for the quick return of the abducted female students of Federal University Gusau.
Badaru, while condemning the act said that federal government is doing everything possible to secure their release.
On his part, the minister of state for defence, Dr Bello Muhammed Matawalle, also condemned the attack and called on the nation’s dedicated security forces to intensify efforts and deploy every available resources to secure the safe return of the abducted students.
He said that all hands must be on deck in securing the release of the abducted students.