On Tuesday evening, yet-to-be-identified gunmen kidnapped five persons along the ever-busy Mile 2 axis of the Ishiagu-Okigwe expressway in Ebonyi State.
The victims were said to be returning home from Enugu Airport in an airport taxi Siena space bus with Registration Number KWL 941 PD when they were kidnapped at Mile 2 area in Ishiagu and taken into the nearby bush by unknown gunmen.
A source from the community, who spoke to our media newsperson on the ground of anonymity, gave the names of the kidnap victims as Ajah Chibuzo, aged 41, his wife, his 12-year-old daughter, and the vehicle’s driver.
The source further revealed that while taking the victims into the bush, the hoodlums also met a farmer on his farm and abducted him.
He stated that the vehicle conveying the initial four victims was abandoned at the scene of the incident but was later recovered at Ishiagu Police Station by security operatives.
Legal Attorney Blog recalls that no fewer than 20 persons have been kidnapped along the axis in the last four months, with about four victims killed by the assailants.
The women of the community had staged a protest a few months ago, which later turned violent, following the hoodlums’ continued abduction of innocent residents of the area.
When contacted, the Special Assistant to the Ebonyi State Governor on Internal Security for the Ivo local government area of the State, Hon. Ike Cletus, who confirmed the latest abduction, expressed regret that the provincial government has become a safe haven for kidnappers, attributing the development to the non-functionality of the local vigilante group in the LGA.
Hon. Cletus expressed concern that apart from the military personnel at the expressway, the vigilante group set up by the local government council was not functional, even as he called for a total overhaul of the security architecture of the local government area.
“Unfortunately, Ivo Local Government has become a safe haven for kidnappers and other criminal elements. We have a non-functional vigilante group in the local government. You hardly see them anywhere in the local government, yet money is spent on them monthly without fruitful results.
“The security architecture of the local government, especially that of the local vigilante group, must be overhauled and make it more efficient,” the governor’s security aide stated.
He maintained that the administration of Governor Francis Nwifuru was determined to ensure the security of lives and properties of all citizens and residents of Ebonyi State, even as he appealed for the support of the local government council chairmen in whose domains the kidnappers operate freely.
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