Iliya Gwaram, the father of one of the abducted Jangebe schoolgirls, who was also kidnapped, has regained his freedom.
Gwaram, who was reportedly held for over three months, regained his freedom on Monday night.
Gwaram was rescued along with nine other victims including nursing mothers and three toddlers. They were brought to the government house in Gusau, Zamfara state capital, around 9pm.
Recounting his ordeal, Gwaram said he was shocked to see his daughter among the kidnapped schoolgirls when they were herded into the abductors’ den.
He said he quickly told his daughter not to act as if they knew each other, and that they were able to keep their relationship a secret while in captivity.
“I have been in captivity with these other people for more than three months when on that Friday morning, l saw the school girls being brought into where we were camped by our abductors,” he said.
“At first, l didn’t know who they were or where they were coming from, until l saw the face of my scared daughter looking at me.
“I quickly told some of the girls who were brought along with her and sat near me to tell my child not to show any indication that she even knew me.
“The girls were brave enough and they kept our little secret up to the last day of their four days stay with us.
“l never cried in the whole of my life like l cried the day the girls were taken back because l felt it was the last time l would see my daughter.
“Fortunately and unknown to me, my daughter informed Gov. Matawalle of our whereabouts and the poor health conditions we were, which led to our freedom today as facilitated by the governor and his security people. ”
Asked if ransom was paid to secure their freedom, Gwaram said he had no idea, adding that all that mattered to them was to return to their homes.
“Look at those two women that we were rescued along with me, two million naira was said to have been raised by their relatives to give to the bandits more than two months ago,” he said.
“But the money could not be traced as it was suspected that it was a different gang that intercepted the man bringing the money and took it from him.”
Gwaram said his daughter will continue with her education despite the kidnapping incident.
He said: “If she wasn’t educated, she would have exposed me when she saw me and that would have put the two of us in danger.
“I thank God for that and l will continue to pray that such a thing never happens to even my worst enemy. ”
The Jangebe schoolgirls were released from captivity on March 2 after reported negotiations between the bandits and state government.