A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr. Obadiah Mailafia, on Monday charged the Nigerian Army to put efforts and do everything within its power to procure the release of the schoolboys kidnapped last Friday from the Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, Katsina State.
He also admonish the Army to stop making ‘reassuring noises’
On Friday night, bandits had stormed the school and abducted at least 333 students after a gun duel with the police.
The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had arrived in the state on Friday, hours before the abduction took place.
The former CBN deputy governor who described the incident as unfortunate, stressed that bandits must be treated as terrorists because they are enemies of the state.
Mailafia said, “My heart goes out to the parents who must be going through a traumatising, agonising time.
“The security forces must do everything they can. We’ve heard some reassuring noises from the Army, saying that they have zeroed down on the exact location of the bandits and where the children are being held.
“All those children must be brought back alive and brought back to their parents. This is not a time for braggadocio. This is not the time for machismo. This is the time to ensure that we bring them (the students) back safely.”
Mailafia reacting to the probability of a negotiation with the bandits by Governor Aminu Masari, said, “I don’t expect that the negotiations will be done in the open but a lot of underground work must be done and there must be enough inducement and enough of backups.”
He also advised the Federal Government to approach countries like Russia and Israel for support to tackle the terrorism and banditry in the country.
“I don’t know why we have not spoken to Russia. Russia’s Vladimir Putin has found a rigorous way of dealing with terrorists. Putin does not negotiate with terrorists. We should talk to Israel; we should talk to countries that have dealt with terrorism. We should talk to countries willing to help.”
Mailafia was a Presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress in the 2019 election.