An abducted student of Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka, Mando, Kaduna State, has denied being rescued by soldiers saying that their abductors willingly released them.
The Nigerian Army had claimed that its troops “recovered five of the students”, who spent over three weeks in captivity.
Samuel Aruwan, Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, was the one who first announced the release of the students but he did not go into details.
“The Nigerian military has informed the Kaduna State Government that five of the many kidnapped students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka, Kaduna were recovered this afternoon and are presently in a military facility where they are undergoing a thorough medical check-up,” Aruwan had said.
However, in a statement on Tuesday, Brig. Gen. Yerima Mohammed, Army Spokesman, unveiled the identities of the “recovered students”, and showered encomiums on the troops.
“The rescued students are currently receiving medical attention in a military facility in Kaduna. The GOC 1 Division, Maj Gen DH Ali-Keffi has commended the troops for their effort and charged them not to rest on their oars until all kidnap victims are rescued and returned to their families,” he had said while giving the impression that the military rescued the students.
But speaking with Daily Trust shortly after the freed victims were reunited with their families on Wednesday, Francis Paul, a 200 Level Student of Agriculture Technology at the institution, said the bandits released them voluntarily.
“One afternoon, they (the bandits) came and started selecting us… I was very ill that day. So, they asked me to sit aside and they added some girls and put us on motorbikes. They dropped us at a village close to the main road and said we should walk towards the road and we did,” he said.