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Dialogue With Bandits Helped Us Secure Release of Jangebe Schoolgirls - Gov Matawalle

Bello Matawalle, governor of Zamfara state, says the state government would not have been able to secure the release of the Jangebe schoolgirls without dialoguing with the bandits.

About 279 schoolgirls were kidnapped after gunmen invaded the Government Girls Secondary School, Jangebe in Talatu-Mafara local government area of the state in the wee hours of the morning last Friday.

The governor announced the release of the schoolgirls on Tuesday.

While responding to questions from journalists in Zamfara on Tuesday, the governor said the release of the girls was made possible by dialogue.

He said the state will continue to dialogue with other bandits who have not accepted the peace deal

“Without a non-kinetic approach, we would not have been able to secure the release of the children. And we’re going to continue with that non-kinetic approach so we can make those that did not accept the peace deal to accept our initiative,” he said.

“We’re going to try and restrategise the best method so that we can bring everybody on board and they can understand this peace reconciliation.”

He also said the girls will undergo counselling.

“I’m very exhausted and very devastated. I haven’t experienced this kind of situation but this is what God has destined to happen during my time and I thank God that with the prayers of Nigerians and other good citizens, we were able to secure their release,” he said.

“We have a counselling department and we are going to invite them, they are all here with us. They are going to undergo counselling.”

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