Saturday May 8, 2021
Tears of joy followed freely in the premises of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Kaduna yesterday as the families and friends of the abducted students reunite with them after their 56 days in the kidnappers den.
The freed students recounting their horrific experiences in the kidnappers den said, we didn’t bathe for the 56 days we were in the forest with our abductors.
At about 3pm, the entire premises of the college, located along the Kaduna International Airport, opposite the Nigerian Defence Academy, erupted in jubilation as the students were being escorted by heavily-armed policemen in company with the state Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, and the state Commissioner of Police, Umar Muri.
Zakariya Magaji, one the victims described their experience as horrific, saying, it is such an experience I won’t even wish an enemy, only God knew how we managed to survive it, it was so horrible.“
The bandits need prayers. All that we have to do is to pray for them for God to touch their hearts. As for me, I have forgiven them for whatever we went through in their hands. The experience was hell.”
Sunday Sarah, one of the freed female student recounting her own experience said, we the girls were subjected to a very dehumanising experience, we were not allowed to bathe, our privacy was violated.
Sunday said, “A lot of things happened while we were there. We were subjected to hunger. We were subjected to trekking and all sorts of dehumanising experiences. We were insulted but thankfully, they did not molest or kill any of us. They only beat us on the first day when they did a video of us.”
Asked if they were fed at all, Sunday said, “The boys used to go and fetch water for us to cook. We cooked tuwo with miyan kuka, and tuwo with dry okra. We only cooked rice once, and we cooked spaghetti once too.”
When asked whether the abductors used to leave them to go out for other operations, Sarah said, “Yes, they used to go out, but they always left some of their armed members to stay with us.
“Even our male colleagues who used to go and fetch water were always escorted to the stream by gang members bearing AK-47 rifles.
“Our living condition in the jungle was very bad. We never had a bath. We were exposed to the rain. Athough there was a hut that we always ran to hide whenever it was raining, still there was no escaping the rain because the hut was poorly built. But we have forgiven our kidnappers. And we pray that God will give them the chance to change for the better.”