- The contradictions regarding the actual number of students abducted in Katsina appear to have been settled with the release of the boys
- Katsina state government had earlier put the number at 333 while presidential aide, Garba Shehu, said only 10 were kidnapped
- However, with the release of 344 schoolboys, Shehu has tendered an apology for the mistake he made regarding the number
Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant, Media and Publicity to President Muhammadu Buhari, has apologised to Nigerians for saying only 10 schoolboys were kidnapped from Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, Katsina state.
Shehu in a thread of tweets sighted by Legit.ng on Friday, December 18, said he got the information regarding the number from "persons that should ideally know."
The senior presidential aide, however, said the mistake regarding the numbers was not to downplay the seriousness of the abduction.
The tweets read:
"I apologize for the incorrect communication citing that only 10 students were kidnapped at the science school, Kankara
"This communication of numbers was provided by persons that should ideally know. These numbers were seen to conflict with what was available at that time.
"Please understand that this communication was in no way done to downplay the seriousness of the situation.
"Please accept my sincere apologies on this matter as we continue to move our great Nation Nigeria forward. Thank you."
Legit.ng notes that Shehu's apology comes after the Katsina state government confirmed the release of 344 schoolboys on Thursday evening, December 17.
There had been confusion regarding the number of kidnapped students until their release on Thursday.
While the Katsina state government put the number at 333, Shehu had said the number was 10 just as another report claimed the school register showed 668 missing.
Meanwhile, the federal government has insisted that bandits were responsible for the kidnap of the Katsina students.
Lai Mohammed, the minister of information and culture, dismissed claims by Boko Haram insurgents that they carried out the abduction.
He said the terrorists falsely claimed responsibility for the abductions because they were seeking relevance, having been decimated.
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