Gunmen, weekend, abducted eight persons, including a traditional ruler in three locations across the country.
While the paramount ruler of Gindri in Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau, Mr. Charles Mato, the Sum Pyem, was abducted yesterday, heavily armed bandits kidnapped five peasants in Zaria, Katsina State, even as gunmen, suspected to be bandits, abducted two men on Christmas Day in Ijan-Ekiti, Gbonyino Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
In Plateau, the Media Officer of Operation Safe Haven, OPSH, the military task force maintaining peace in the state, Major Ishaku Takwa, confirmed the abduction. He told newsmen, yesterday, in Jos that Mato was kidnapped from his residence at Gindiri.
He said troops of the task force had been mobilized to the area to conduct search and rescue.
“Troops of OPSH at Gyambus in Mangu have been mobilized to the area. They are on the trail of the kidnappers,” Takwa said.
Bandits kidnap 5 in Zaria
In the Zaria abduction, an eyewitness in the area told journalists that “they came to our area with arms and ammunition and kidnapped five persons. The five persons lived close to my house at Kuregu Wusasa, opposite the new ECWA church.”
Meanwhile, two persons abducted in Ekiti State on Christmas day were on a motorbike around 5:30 pm.
One of the victims, simply identified as Ajankoro, a cocoa merchant, and the motorcyclist conveying him were said to be on their way from Ilupeju-Ijan to Ijan-Ekiti when they were accosted by the bandits, who kidnapped them and whisked them away to an unknown destination.
Abductors of Ekiti monarch demand N20m ransom
In a related development, some suspected gunmen who kidnapped a traditional ruler in Ijan-Ekiti, Gbonyin Local Government Area of Ekiti State on Thursday, have demanded N20 million to free their victim.
A family source, who preferred anonymity, said the kidnappers called Friday night and demanded the amount before they could release the victim.
The source said: “They have called to ask for this huge amount of money before they can set him free, the amount is so exorbitant, and we don’t know how to source the fund.
“We only pleaded for his safe release from their den. It’s still a sad Christmas for us, as the breadwinner of our family has been taken to an unknown destination and his whereabouts cannot be ascertained.”
Contacted on the development, the Commandant of Amotekun Corps in Ekiti State, Brigadier.-General Joe Komolafe (rted), said he was not aware of the ransom being demanded by the abductors.
He said his men are working round the clock to ensure that the victim is released unhurt.
“I’m not aware of ransom demanded by the bandits, all I know is that our men have been deployed to the areas where we suspected the gunmen might have used as their hideout,” he said.
Komolafe advised residents of the community to volunteer timely and useful information that can lead to the arrest of the bandits.