Six aid workers in Boko Haram’s new video beg for rescue
Crisis creates urgency for action, says presidency
The presidency has declared that a new video by an affiliate of ISIS in Boko Haram has created the urgency for the intelligence community to speedily take action on the prevailing security challenges in the country.
The presidency said yesterday that six Nigerian non-governmental organisation’s workers kidnapped in Borno State last week appeared in the hostage video begging for their lives and identifying their captors as militants from the local ISIS affiliate, a group that had previously executed humanitarians.
In the three-minute video shared online yesterday, a woman wearing a blue abaya and identifying herself as Grace begged her employer and the Nigerian government to help free her and the five men kneeling silently behind her.
Identifying herself as a Christian Nigerian who works for the aid organisation, Action Against Hunger, she said she and her colleagues “were caught by this army called the Calipha.”
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, in a reaction yesterday, said: “The presidency has been briefed by the responsible government agency about the disturbing video showing our citizens, the humanitarian aid workers held captive.”
According to Shehu, the Nigerian government has been given assurances that contact is being made and the captors are being talked to.
“Beside these aid workers, there are some others about whom this engagement is about-Leah Sharibu, a religious leader and all the others.
“These discussions have been ongoing even before this time and what this latest incident has done is to bring urgency to the efforts that the secret service is making.
“Government is making contacts, in the hope that the captors will see reason to not visit hardship or even harm on these innocent individuals. Government is working,” Shehu said.