Jubilation As Terrorists Release Kidnapped Bride In Zamfara
Terrorists in Zamfara have released a bride-to-be and her wedding party abducted five months ago. Negotiations had broken because the armed group refused the money the family collected because it was not in new naira notes.
A bride-to-be has been reunited with her fiance, nearly five months after she was kidnapped just days before she was due to be married.
Terrorists released 20-year-old Rukaya Mani and returned her to her parents in Masamar-Mudi Village, Bukuyum local government area in Zamfara state on May 10.
There had been many attempts at negotiating her release but negotiations had broken down several times.
The family had problems collecting the money the abductors demanded because of the cash shortage that followed the government-ordered redesign of the naira. The kidnappers refused the money they did collect, because it was in the old notes, HumAngle reported.
Their release followed the terrorists’ acceptance of a ransom payment of ₦2 million. They had originally demanded ₦4 million, but had during negotiations settled on ₦3 million.
Also released with Rukaya were three of her friends and two other septuagenarian farmers taken during the raid. They spent four months and three weeks in captivity.
They were all kidnapped as the friends were adorning the bride with the wedding henna designs on her arms and legs.
After the release, the entire community and families of the victims gathered and sang in jubilation for the arrival of the abductees at Masamar-Mudi village.
Habibu Bala, who was due to marry Rukaya in January said the wedding was still on: “Nothing and nobody will deter me. After all it’s God’s making neither hers nor mine, not even the fault of her or my parents.”
“We have already and promptly taken steps to address Rukaya’s sympathetic situation. My family and I jointly took her to the hospital for a medical examination. We are now waiting for her medical report from the Doctor, and necessary advice.”
The gang finally released the bride and her guests after 97 unsuccessful negotiation talks with the relatives of the victims since 29 Dec 2022.
The armed group called the captives’ families, forcing them to submit the payment at an agreed location known as Dajin-Gando (an area close to the armed gang’s camp) in Bukuyum.
Malam Maidamma, 58, the father of Sha’awanatu Bala, one of Rukaya’s bridal party said: “I nearly lost hope I would reunite with my daughter Sha’awanatu.”
“We already accepted faith that she was going to be killed as the terrorists have been threatening to do since December, 2022. But the will of God let it be that they be back home. I am extremely happy for their safe return.
Maidamma disclosed that there had been some concern about the community stigmatising their daughters after their kidnap ordeal, and whether that would be made worse if they took them to hospital for a check-up.
However, Umema, 39, the mother of Sha’awanatu insisted that her released daughter be taken to hospital “no matter whose ox is gored”.
She said “My prime concern now is to see and make sure that she checked and found sound, hale and hearty.”
Sani Danga and Magori, the two kidnapped victims, told HumAngle: “We were camped at Katsalle forest in Bukuyum LGA for all these while, as if we were in a completely different world.”
A huge gathering of the villagers, well-wishers and families of the victims were assembled to celebrate their arrival when they reached home.
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