The father to the Speaker of the Zamfara State House of Assembly, Muazu Magarya, has died while being held by bandits.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how bandits abducted the speaker’s father, uncle, step mother and four other relatives from Mr Magarya’s country home in Magarya.
A notorious bandit known as Turji is suspected to be behind the abduction.
Although another notorius bandit, Halilu Kachalla, was said to have intervened with Turji to release the captives, he refused.
Sources close to the speaker had told PREMIUM TIMES that one of Turji’s commanders, Dan Bokkolo, rejected the ransom money brought by the speaker’s aides.
Speaking to journalists at the police headquarters in the state on Saturday evening, an uncle to the speaker, Dahiru Sarki, said his brother died of heart failure while he was being held by the bandits.
Mr Sarki and four of those kidnapped at Mr Magarya’s house had been rescued by police and military personnel.
A local news medium in Zamfara reported Mr Sarki’s conversation with journalists at the police headquarters in Gusau on Saturday.
“Although, we were separated when they kidnapped us, they took my brother to another camp. But Kachalla, one of the commanders of the bandits, told me about the death of my brother as a result of heart attack a few hours to our rescue,” the platform quoted Mr Sarki as saying.
An aide to the speaker, who demanded not to be named, told PREMIUM TIMES that the speaker had feared the worst after Turji rejected the ransom.
“But we didn’t think that Alhaji was dead by then. I spoke to some of our people who were in contact with the bandits negotiating the release and they told me we needed to intensify prayers. I think he was already dead by then,” the speaker’s aide said.
The speaker’s official spokesperson, Mustapha Jaafar, did not respond to calls and SMS sent to him on the issue.