Bandits who abducted the 121 students of Bethel Baptist High School, Kaduna, have demanded a cumulative ransom of N60 million to free the remaining 120 students with Monday as the deadline.
This came after the kidnappers released one of the students over health issues.
A parent who disclosed the news of the ransom request to our correspondent but did not want his name mentioned, said the church and parents of the students were working hard to raise the ransom.
The parent expressed the hope that if the ransom demand was met yesterday, the students would be released today as promised by the bandits.
He said the bandits had demanded hundreds of millions, but after several days of negotiations, they reduced it to N500,000 per student, making a total of N60 million.
According to him, "some amount has been gathered, but the church is trying to raise additional funds from members and well-wishers to complete the money. We, the parents, have already been contributing to the pool."
The bandits had last week released one of the students who became sick in their custody.
The student was brought home by some other kidnapped victims who were released after their families had paid their ransom.
Meanwhile, the chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Kaduna State chapter Rev John Joseph Hayab has described as false a report that three of the kidnapped students had been killed.
He said, "This false news of the killing of three abducted students started on Saturday and we do not know the motive of the peddlers of this fake news, but from all available sources all 120 children are safe and we are working hard to bring them back home to the warm embrace of their caring parents.
"We are appealing to those who want to be first at breaking news to cross-check every story before going to print so that they will not break the hearts of people with their unconfirmed breaking news," he said.