Politics

Abuja Train Victims May Die Of Sickness, Snake Bites – Negotiator Raises The Alarm

Muhammed Abubakar, Reporting

The go-between negotiating the release of the Abuja-bound train victims between the terrorists and the Federal Government
has raised the alarm that most of the remaining victims of the train attack may hardly survive the next few weeks due to deteriorating health conditions and the inhumane condition they are subjected to in the forest.

The lead negotiator and publisher of the Kaduna-based Desert Herald Newspaper, Tukur Mamu, made this known in a statement he issued to newsmen in Kaduna on Monday.

In the statement, Mamu, who is also the media consultant to Sheikh Gummi, declared that he would not be part of any engagement that will secure the release of others who are still in captivity for personal reasons.

He added that with the window of mediation he succeeded in opening and for building limited confidence between the government and the abductors coupled with the success of securing the release of the 11 victims, he has done his bit.

Though the negotiator confirmed that the victims were not being molested or beaten in any way, he, however, lamented their condition.

He insisted that efforts to rescue them must be treated as a national emergency if the government wants most of them to come back alive.

He maintained that he was alerting the leadership of the country particularly the security agencies and concerned Nigerians that something very urgent must be done to save the lives of the remaining victims.

“This is not time to politicize issues. Lives of very promising, innocent Nigerians are involved in this. There health condition is deteriorating by the day.

“Even animals without proper care will hardly survive in the environment they are forced to leave for nearly three months now.

“I believe government is aware and has taken note of the testimony of the 11 victims that were secured.

“It makes me sad when issues like this should not be treated with dispatch, with the seriousness and speed it requires.

“In addition to lack of diagnosis and treatment coupled with poor nutrition, poor sanitary condition and how they are exposed to unbearable forest life, most of the innocent hostages have lately developed series of life threatening complications with some vomiting even blood,” he noted.

The negotiator further revealed that the condition of those with already underlining illnesses is fast deteriorating and called on the Federal Government to act fast before it is too late.

According to him, he feels frustrated and feels the pain whenever he gives updates and publicity to this lingering imbroglio.

He opined that the purpose is not meant, in any way, to embarrass the government or to create panic situation amongst the loved ones of the victims but for all those concerned to be alerted about the real development, about the real situation on the ground for urgent collective efforts.

“In addition to sicknesses that are threatening the lives of many hostages, snakes bites have affect so many of them.

“I can confirm to you that snakes are many in that forest. Some of them are victims of the snakes bites as they appear frequently in the night. They only depend on local solution to treat the bites.

‘The bites, as we know, can be life threatening. Government is the only authority with the means and powers to end this crisis as soon as possible.

“And with the right approach, I can assure you it can be achieved within days or weeks. We have proven that in the release of the 11 victims.

“If we can tolerate corrupt officials that are stealing billions every day as a result of which poverty and insecurity increase, for me, it is not out of place to use negligible part of such stolen resources to secure such victims whenever the need arises.

“And if for any reason government did not act promptly, since it has been alerted, they must be prepared to take full responsibility,” he warned.

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