The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Government to rescue Pastor Bulus Yikura, who has been in the custody of Boko Haram for over two months and is billed for execution by the insurgents on Thursday.
The call by the House followed the unanimous adoption of a motion of urgent public importance moved at the plenary on Tuesday by the lawmaker representing Chibok/Damboa/Gwoza Federal Constituency in Borno State, Mr Ahmad Jaha.
Adopting the motion, the House resolved to “intimate the Federal Government to do everything possible to secure the release of the victim before the deadline.”
It also urged the government to come to the aid of families who lost their members and those whose houses were burnt and food items carted away, to alleviate their suffering.
Moving the motion, Jaha said, “The House is worried by the continuous closing of the one-week period given by the insurgents, which expires on Thursday, March 4, 2021. The House is concerned that at the expiration of the deadline, anything can happen to Pastor Bullus Yikura.”
The Abubakar Shekau-led faction of Boko Haram had on February 24, 2021, issued a one-week ultimatum to the Federal Government to secure the release of Yikura, who was abducted in December 2020.
The insurgents raided Pemi community, about 20 kilometres from Chibok, in Borno State on December 24, 2020, during which the cleric was taken away.
The pastor, in the two videos of him released by the sect in December 2020 and January 2021 pleaded with the President Muhammadu Buhari, the Governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum; and church leaders to rescue him.
In the third video said to have been released on February 24, 2021, the insurgents gave a one-week ultimatum to the government or have him killed.
Yikura, who spoke in Hausa and identified himself as a worshipper at the EYN LCC in Hausa, said the countdown to his execution started on February 24 and ends on March 4.
Boko Haram in January 2020 killed the District Chairman of the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria, Michika, Adamawa State, Revd Lawan Andimi.
In another development, the House, also on Tuesday adopted a motion of urgent public importance on bandits’ attacks on Amarawa village in the Illela/Gwadabawa Federal Constituency in Sokoto State.
The House appealed to the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development and the National Emergency Management Agency to provide relief materials to the affected victims in the village to ease their difficult condition of living.
The motion was jointly sponsored by Messrs Abdullahi Salame, Saidu Bargaja, Shehu Kakale and Abubakar Ahmad.