The governor said the boys were at Tsafe, Zamfara State, and would be transported to Kankara on Friday.
According to him, the release of the boys was facilitated by the leadership of MACABAN/Miyetti Allah.
The governor’s Special Adviser on Security, Mallam Ibrahim Katsina, also confirmed the development.
He told The PUNCH on Thursday night that “Allihamdulillahi, the boys have been rescued and are now at Tsafe, Zamfara State. But, we shall be moving them to Kankara tomorrow (Friday).”
We didn’t pay any ransom
However, Masari in an interview with DWTV Hausa at 10pm on Thursday, said no ransom was paid before the boys were released.
When asked if ransom was paid before the release of the boys, he said, “We did not pay ransom to the kidnappers, it was purely negotiation.”
Explaning how the boys were released, “One hour ago, Nigerian soldiers and government officials that were involved in the negotiation for the release of the kidnapped schoolboys have told us that the whole school children have been released, 344 of them.
“Those involved in the negotiation include my adviser, some top military and police operatives, members of Miyetti Allah; (they) where all involved in the negotiation.”
He also said those who kidnapped the boys were not Boko Haram.“They are bandits who kidnapped the schoolboys, not Boko Haram.”
Recall that the gunmen suspected to be bandits abducted the students last Friday night from their school’s hostel in a Gestapo-like action.