One of the recently freed Abuja-Kaduna train attack passengers, Hassan Othman, has narrated his four-month ordeal in captivity.
Recall that Othman and three other victims were released on Monday, July 25, a day after the terrorists released a disturbing video where the hostages were seen being mercilessly flogged.
Recounting his experience in an interview with BBC Hausa service, Othman said they were brutally beaten by the terrorists.
Othman, who is a lawyer, further said they were initially sleeping on the bare ground in the thick forest but later, they were provided with mats and when it rained, the terrorists erected makeshift shelters for them.
“We were seriously beaten as seen in the video and it is as a result of failure to rescue us by government. Because of the government’s attitude, they were angered and they thoroughly beat us.
We were severely flogged and that was just the beginning. This makes me to pity those that are still with them in the forest.
In terms of feeding, the they fed us according to their capacity. At times, they even slaughtered cattle and sheep for us. Even day before yesterday they slaughtered a cow and we ate, we thank Allah.
I couldn’t locate the forest we were taken, since the Federal government had failed to rescue us for the past 4 months, the international community should come in and rescue the remaining victims who were in a pitiable condition in the forest.”
“Our relatives facilitated our release, they initially tried but government stopped them and now succeeded. I don’t know if they paid ransom or not, three of us are released today, the remaining in captivity are up to 40.”
March 28, 2022, terrorists attacked a Kaduna-bound passenger train, killing 8 people and abducting 63 others including pregnant women and children. Many others were wounded.
One of the abducted victims, the managing director of the Nigerian Bank of Agriculture, Alwan Hassan, was released about a week later, after reportedly paying a ransom of N100 million.
A pregnant woman was also released, before another 11 were set free early June. On July 9, seven of 50 remaining abductees were released.