Zamfara kidnapped twin girls released, twin boys still in captivity.


The twin sisters, Hassana and Hussaina kidnapped by gunmen in Zamfara around 24 October 2018 has been released after a ransom of N15million was said to have been paid to the abductors. The twins were released unhurt on Saturday 17 November but have been taken to an undisclosed hospital for medical checkup.

The abduction occurred at Dauran village, Zurmi local government area of Zamfara State as the sisters traveled to visit a cousin who was preparing for her wedding in December.

Earlier the captors had made a demand for a ransom of a whooping N150 million or about half a million dollars before the final amount was negotiated.

Reports say Senator Kabiru Marafa representing Zamfara Central in the federal upper house and the Chairman of Zurmi LGA, Mr. Awwal-Bawa Moriki donated N6 million and N5 million respectively as contributions to the ransom. There was also crowdfunding on social media to help raise the balance.

The contributions took an urgent turn when the abductors began to threaten to kill one of the girls if the ransom was delayed further. A family member of the hostages, Ibrahim Abubakar speaking with the kidnappers was allowed a few minutes with the girls.

In the audio clip of the conversation, Hussaina was narrating their harrowing ordeal in captivity. “I am battling with headache”, she cried. “We are in dire situation, they are about to kill us.

“They beat us every morning. Please help rescue us. Even yesterday, they slaughtered some people in our presence whose families could not pay.

“We are starving. Please get contributions even from the general public.”

One of the abductors was heard in the background of the clip vowing that the phone call would be the last time anyone would hear from the twin sisters if the ransom was not paid.

Although Hassana and Hussaina are both free, the spate of killings and abductions in Zamfara State appear not to be abating. Reports of inexplicable and unwarranted killings have become the order of the day leading to the State governor Abdul’aziz Yari taking the unusual step back in June of “resigning” his position as chief security officer of the state

“We have been facing serious security challenges over the years, but in spite of being governor and chief security officer of the State, I cannot direct security officers on what to do nor sanction them when they err”, Gov Yari lamented.

“As Chief Security Officer, the nomenclature is just a name.”

Two days before the kidnap of Hussana and Hussaina, two twin boys were alleged to have been kidnapped within the same Zurmi LGA. But in a world fixated with the fortunes of the girl child, the ordeal of these hapless boys have largely gone unnoticed.

One Abdul Balarabe who posted the news on his twitter account could only ask for prayers for the boys for their “unconditional release”. No one knows what fate had become of those innocent youngsters.

Zamfara has been the hub of deadly banditry especially this year, and some allege that most incidents are unreported.

President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, have both publicly stated that more people have been killed in Zamfara this year than in Benue and Taraba States combined. Yet both States have witnessed countless attacks that have resulted in the death of hundreds of people this year alone.

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