PEMI, 25 February 2021 – Terror group, Boko Haram, has issued a seven-day ultimatum to the Nigerian government, demanding ransom to release a pastor or kill him.
The hostage, Rev. Pastor Bulus Yakuru, has not been seen or heard from since his abduction in December 2020.
Rev. Yakuru was kidnapped and whisked away during an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pemi village, close to Chibok, on the eve of Christmas last year.
Some 112 of the 276 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram militants from a boarding school in Chibok on 14 April 2014 have never been released or heard from.
It is believed that many of them were sold into sex slavery at about five dollars per girl and that others may have been forced to marry Boko Haram insurgents.
Others are believed to have been summarily executed.
Late in December 2020 and early in January 2021, Pastor Yakuru’s captors released videos in which the pastor pleaded with the government and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) to come to his rescue.
The new demand for ransom payment and a seven-day ultimatum was delivered in a video viewed on HumAngle by Naija News, which published an article on it Thursday.
The pastor is featured in the new video with a Boko Haram soldier holding a knife to his head as the “Man of God” can be heard begging Nigerian President Muhmmadu Buhari and the Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Zulum, to urgently come to his rescue before he is killed.
“I’m calling on President Muhammadu Buhari and the Governor of Borno to help me because I have been given a one-week ultimatum today, Febraury 24,” a distraught Rev. Yakuru says in the video.
“If you want me alive, I beg you in your capacity as President, the governor and our local government chairman to save me from this suffering,” the pastor added.
The pastor also called on his Local Government Chairperson and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) to do whatever they can to secure his safe release.
“Please release me from this pain,” the pastor can be heard begging in the video.
It is understood that the deadline given by the terrorists will expire on Wednesday, 3rd March 2021.
In a related story, the driver of Adamawa United Football Club, Kabiru Mohammed, who had been abducted by gunmen along the Benin-Ore-Lagos road was released Wednesday night.
The permanent secretary of the Adamawa State Ministry of Youths and Sports, Aliyu Abubakar, confirmed the release Thursday, telling reporters via phone interview that released driver was in sound mind.
While it is highly likely that ransom was paid, there is no confirmation that money changed hands or played a role in the release of the driver.