Banditry: Niger community remains deserted three weeks after kidnap of district head 

Barely 15 days after the Kidnap of the District Head of Yakila in Rafi Local Government Area of Niger State, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdulamid by gunmen suspected to be armed bandits, the community has been deserted like a ghost town, with stalls and commercial outlets under lock and key.
Some residents of the community were also said to have relocated from the community to neighbourhood communities for fear of further attacks by the fleeing hoodlums.
Nigerian Tribune gathered that at the time of the attack some three weeks ago, the district head, in conjunction with the ward leader of the APC and a staff nurse at Garin-Gabas who was identified as Halima, as well as her two little children were kidnapped and have remained in the custody of their abductors since the unfortunate incident occurred.
But when Governor Abubakar Sani Bello paid a condolence visit to the area on Monday, he met a deserted and a community almost bereft of the presence of human beings as virtually all the commercial outlets were closed down and business centres were locked up.
It was further gathered that majority of the traders who were in the habits of displaying their article of trades by the roadsides and other major streets in the community were nowhere to be seen around the community noted for its hustling and bustling.
Further checks revealed that some residents of the community who managed to stay back in the community, locked themselves inside their residential houses opting to take a look at the governor from the windows within their houses.
This reporter who was on the entourage of Governor Bello during the visit also gathered that the notorious armed bandits only spoke to the leadership of the community once since the district head was abducted, adding that it was about two weeks ago that the incident happened.
According to the leaders of the community, the bandits have not contacted them again, fueling fears that the kidnapped district head may have been killed.
One of the community leaders, an Alhaji who briefed the governor on the unfortunate incident said: “The last time they made contact with us was two weeks ago but they did not ask for anything.”
He stated further that there was already apprehension in the community dwellers about the safety of the embattled  district head, noting that “right now we don’t even know whether he has been killed or not.”
But our reporter exclusively gathered from one of the community members who craved for anonymity that the bandits have actually demanded a ransom of N4million.
Addressing some members of the community in the kidnapped district head’s palace, Governor Bello said the government has an intelligence report that the bandits have informants among the people.
The governor thereby informed the people that they should join hands with the government to secure their community from the incessant banditry attack, saying that “security is everybody’s business.”

Governor Bello also assured the people that government was on top of the situation, highlighting that very soon the fleeing bandits would be arrested, prosecuted and be brought to book.


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