Armed bandits have released six of their victims in Katsina state after spending 66 days in captivity. 

The victims and 22 others were abducted while one person was killed when bandits attacked some communities in Batsari Local Government Area of the state last May. 

A local source told AIT that one of the victims identified as Hussaina Umar Tukur and her child, Al-Ameen secured their freedom after her family payed N2.5 million cash as ransom. 

A resident, Misbahu Batsari, told Premium Times that when they were to release Hussaina Umar and her son, the bandits decided to select four out of the remaining people in captivity and sent them as a Sallah gift to the people of the community.

It was gathered that after receiving the ransom, the bandits promised to release Hussaina and her son to her family at a location in Batsari on Friday evening, July 23. 

A member of Hussaina’s family who went to the location to pick her, however, met other victims out of which four were also released along with the mother and child. 

The family member who pleaded anonymity said the bandits released the other victims on compassionate ground. He gave the names of other freed victims as Marwanatu Bello, Zainab Bello, Muhammad Bello and Yakubu Bello.

Batsari, who is a journalist, said that Hussaina and other freed victims have reunited with their families after undergoing medical check-up. 

"They look very tired and frustrated. They told us how heartless the kidnappers are. An infant, who was kidnapped alongside his mother, died in the kidnappers’ den." Batsari said. 

Meanwhile, Hussaina’s husband, Mr Tukur, declined to comment on the development.

"What matters is my wife and son have come back to me,” he told Premium Times. 

Recounting their ordeals while in captivity, one of the victims stated that they suffered a lot in the hands of their abductors, who kept them with little or no food for some days including other forms of molestations.

Another victim also revealed that one of the ladies amongst the abductees lost her child while being tortured.