President Muhammadu Buhari, has accused bandits of blackailing his government by kidnapping students from schools in some states in the North.
In a statement on Friday, Buhari promised to ensure the safe return of all the students being held captive by bandits.
He also stated that hostage crisis is a complex situation that requires maximum restraint.
Buhari said, “Our primary objective is to get all the school hostages safe, alive and unharmed.
“We have the capacity to deploy massive force against the bandits in the villages where they operate, but our limitation is the fear of heavy casualties of innocent villagers and hostages who might be used as human shields by the bandits.
“A hostage crisis is a complex situation that requires maximum patience in order to protect the victims from physical harm or even brutal death at the hands of their captors.
“Let bandits, kidnappers and terrorists not entertain any illusions that they are more powerful than the government. They shouldn’t mistake our restraint for the humanitarian goals of protecting innocent lives as a weakness or a sign of fear or irresolution.
“Let me say this again: We will not succumb to blackmail by bandits and criminals who target innocent school students in the expectation of huge ransom payments.”