Fraudsters Demanding Money to Negotiate Release of Chibok Girls, Says Buhari

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By Tobi Soniyi in Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday in Abuja said that some fraudsters had approached the Federal Government for money to secure the release of the kidnapped Chibok girls.

A statement issued in Abuja yesterday by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina said Buhari made the revelation while receiving the Primate and Archbishops of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) at the State House, Abuja.

 However, the president said that while the rescue and safe return of the remaining Chibok girls remained a top priority of his administration, he would not fall for the antics of the fraudsters whom he said had asked the Federal Government for money to negotiate the release the girls.

He however did not disclose the identity of the fraudsters.

The president said that his administration would continue to insist on a thorough authentication of the identities and bona fides of any persons or groups claiming to have custody of the girls before entering into negotiations with them.

Adesina said the president, however, assured the Anglican Bishops of his steadfast commitment to the rescue of the Chibok Girls, adding that their safe return would be one of his greatest fulfillments in office as president.

He said Buhari also assured the clerics that the Federal Government would give maximum attention to the clean-up of Ogoniland which was launched yesterday.

‘‘We inherited the United Nations Environmental Project report from the previous administration. We decided it needed urgent attention, in spite of the economic crunch because of our concern for the welfare and environmental comfort of the people of Ogoniland,’’ he said.

Earlier in his remarks, the Primate of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Most Rev Nicholas Okoh had ledged the support of the church in helping the Federal Government achieve its objectives of improving security and the welfare of Nigerians.