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Securitymen raise bar in battle against kidnappers

It was a busy day for security agencies yesterday as the battle against bandits and kidnappers raged on.

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) aircraft killed 15 terrorists along the Kwiga-Kampamin Doka axis in Birnin Gwari Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Lagos Chapter, Philip Aivoji, regained freedom four days after being abducted along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

The Army handed over freed 35 kidnapped victims from Tasha Nagule and Natasha villages in Batsari LGA to Governor Dikko Umaru Radda of Katsina State.

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command rescued five kidnap victims unhurt from Kuje forest.

The Imo State Police Command said it arrested five suspected kidnappers and recovered bodies during a raid.

But just as the security agencies were busy, criminals were plotting.

Gunmen suspected to be kidnappers yesterday killed two traditional rulers in Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State.

Also yesterday in Imo State, gunmen struck at Ohii junction on the Owerri – Orlu Road, killing no fewer than four persons.

In Abuja, they killed a nursing mother and her mother who came to care for her after abducting them. The baby, barely one month old, was left unhurt.

NAF spokesperson, Air Vice Marshall Edward Gabkwet, said the terrorists bombed in Kaduna were responsible for the ambush on troops at Kwanan Mutuwa on January 27, and other attacks and abduction of civilians in Birnin Gwari.

According to him, on arrival at the suspected location, a detailed scan revealed a trail of terrorists sighted moving in a convoy of about 15 motorcycles, each with at least two armed bandits.

“Accordingly, the terrorists were trailed to a location where they converged before they were engaged and neutralised in a precision strike.

“The aftermath of the action revealed that several of the terrorists were eliminated as a result of the strike,” Gabkwet said.

* PDP Chairman regains freedom

The Police Command in Ogun rescued nine of the 10 PDP members kidnapped by gunmen last Thursday on their way back to Lagos from Ibadan.

Commissioner of Police in Ogun, Abiodun Alamutu, said one of the abductees, Bilikisu Kazeem, lost her life during an exchange of gunfire between police and the hoodlums.

Alamutu said the abductees were freed in the early hours of yesterday after four days in captivity.

Aivoji and others were kidnapped on their way back from Ibadan around the Ogere axis of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway after attending a PDP meeting in Ibadan.

The police commissioner said that he was not aware of any ransom being paid.

The kidnappers had demanded N200 million ransom.

The kidnappers had demanded N200 million ransom.

* Police rescue five from forest

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command rescued five kidnapped victims unhurt at Kuje forest.

FCT Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Josphine Adeh, said a woman rescued among the victims was kidnapped on January 27, at about 11:30 pm, when a distress call was received by the Iddo Police Division about sounds of gunshots around Sabon Lugbe axis.

She said the police patrol team was drafted to the scene where one Blessing Eze, a woman was met with bullet wounds on her shoulder inside a black Toyota Corolla car with registration number RSH724KC.

Army hands over freed 35 to governor

The 35 freed kidnapped victims abducted from Tasha Nagule and Natasha villages in Batsari LGA were rescued by the 17 Brigade of the Nigerian Army, led by the Commander, Brigadier General O.A. Fadairo.

Radda thanked Allah for rescuing the victims without any casualties.

He said: “Many terrorists in Katsina have been killed, with their camps dislodged and a lot of weapons recovered through the joint efforts of security operatives in the state.

‘’My administration will deal with persons ‘romancing’ with terrorists in the state.’’

The governor donated N100,000 each to the 35 rescued persons.

Imo police arrest five suspected kidnappers, recover bodies

Imo Commissioner of Police, Aboki Danjuma, said the command’s Special Tactical Unit in synergy with some local hunters stormed a suspected kidnappers’ hideout in a forest between Avu and Ihiagwa yesterday.

They arrested five suspected kidnappers namely: Muazu Awuta (30), Abdullahi Abubakar (32), Ozeru Sabo (25), Saddam Suleiman (27) and Bashir Yahaya (28), all of Jau LGA of Jigawa State.

“On combing the forest, two decomposing unidentified corpses suspected to be kidnapped victims and other items like telephones, wristwatches, shoes, and slippers were recovered.

“Five operational motorcycles of the suspected kidnappers were also recovered,” Danjuma said.

He added the command would carry out further DNA tests to ascertain the identity of the deceased.

Police arrest 139 kidnappers, others in two weeks

Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Kayode Egbetokun, said about 139 kidnappers and armed robbery suspects have been arrested since January 17.

He spoke at the inauguration of Special Intervention Squad (SIS) training for 38 commanders at the Goodluck Jonathan Peacekeeping Hall, Force Headquarters, Abuja.

Egbetokun said the American government has volunteered to train SIS officers.

The IGP said a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), between the Nigerian Government and the U.S. was signed on December 18, 2023.

* Gunmen kill two monarchs in Ekiti

Suspected kidnappers yesterday killed two traditional rulers in Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State.

They were the Elesun of Esun Oba Babatunde Ogunsakin and Olumojo of Imojo, Oba Samuel Olatunde.

The monarchs were allegedly ambushed and killed along Ipao-Irele-Oke Ako while returning from Ogbe, a neighbouring town in Yagba West Local Government Area of Kogi State.

The Alara of Ara-Ekiti, Oba Adebayo Fatoba, escaped from the scene.

Police spokesman, Sunday Abutu said: “I will get the details and get back please.”

Chairman of the Ajoni Local Council Development Area, Micheal Ogungbemi, confirmed the incident.

He believes the gunmen were attempting to kidnap the three traditional rulers.

Governor Biodun Oyebanji condemned the killing and ordered security agencies to fish out the killers.

The governor, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Yinka Oyebode, said security agents have been dispatched to the area.

Oyebanji charged security agencies to remain vigilant and resolute in the efforts to stamp out crime and criminality from the state.

* Gunmen kill policeman

Gunmen kill no fewer than four persons.

One of the victims was a policeman on duty.

The hoodlums dispossessed some POS operators around the scene of some cash.

The police said a manhunt has been launched for the attackers.

Danjuma said one police officer and two civilians were killed.

He urged residents who may have any useful information to report at the nearest Police State or via the emergency lines 08034773600 or 08098880197.

Kidnappers kill nursing mother, mother in Abuja

Kidnappers killed a nursing mother, Christiana Igba, and her mother, Maria Agbo, two weeks after abducting them.

Agbo had visited Abuja for postnatal care of her grandchild.

The kidnappers freed the baby, who is one month old.

The incident occurred in the Dei Dei Community in Abuja.

Christiana was childless for over 10 years.

The kidnappers handed the baby, who was ill, to another female victim to take to the hospital.

They also gave her the baby’s father’s number to contact him.

The father, Simon Igba, a policeman, slumped on hearing that his wife and mother had been killed.

A neighbour, Adejo Jacob, said the kidnappers demanded N90 million ransom.

Jacob said: “The late Christiana gave birth recently after being barren for more than ten years.

“Her mother came to Abuja from Benue State for the postnatal and to celebrate with the family over the newborn.

“The kidnappers earlier asked the husband to pay N90 million ransom as the only condition to release his wife and his mother-in-law.

“A day before they were killed, the kidnappers contacted the husband, and they both negotiated and settled for N10 million.

“The kidnappers asked him to make the money available before 10 am the following day, which was last Thursday.

“Before the agreed time, the kidnappers called the husband to inform him that the was ill.

“There was another victim that the kidnappers released that day, so they gave her the baby and asked her to take the newborn to a hospital.

“The kidnappers gave her the phone number of the baby’s father and asked her to call when she got to the hospital.

“The woman did as she was instructed. The hospital called Igba, and he went there and recovered his baby.

“After a few hours, we received a report that Christiana and her mother had been killed.

“Their bodies were dumped, and some police officers went there to recover them. They have been deposited at the Kubwa General Hospital.”

A relative, Prince Victor Omonu, also confirmed the killings in a Facebook post.

He said: “It is a sad world. My relative came to Abuja to celebrate the birth of her grandchild. She was kidnapped alongside her daughter and newborn.

“Just got the news now that she and her daughter have been murdered this morning. What a sad world. The baby is still alive though.”

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