By Eetika Kapoor | 4:55 PM IST
Seventy-eight children kidnapped from their boarding school in Cameroon have been freed, school authorities told CNN Wednesday.
The group of 42 girls and 36 boys was seized by gunmen with their school principal, a teacher and driver early Monday from the Presbyterian Secondary School in Bamenda, in the northwest of the central African nation. One other girl managed to escape from the kidnappers.
The government and separatists in the region have blamed each other for the kidnapping.https://t.co/fkUq6FcSNf
— scroll.in (@scroll_in) November 7, 2018
After an intensive search, the students were released and returned to the school with their driver at 9:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. ET) on Tuesday, according to teacher Vumesegah Peter Kogah. A military truck later transported the children to the governor’s office.
The school principal and a teacher are still being held captive, Rev. Fonki Samuel Forba, the moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Cameroon, told CNN.
“Praise God 78 children and the driver have been released,” Rev. Forba said. “The principal and one teacher are still with the kidnappers. Let us keep praying. For now we still do not know the kidnappers until we interview the students.
A video of the abducted children was uploaded by the ‘Amba Boys’ on YouTube referring to the separatist groups who want to establish the state of Ambazonia in country’s north-west and south-west regions citing the Associated Press.
Fonki and the Cameroonian army had blamed Anglophone separatists for the abduction although a spokesperson for the group refuted the allegations.