by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
Heavily armed bandits have reportedly invaded a community at the outskirts of Kaduna metropolis and abducted no fewer than 18 persons.
The bandits reportedly stormed Keke Community in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State in the early hours of Tuesday and abducted the 18 residents.
Eyewitness said the gunmen, numbering about 20, invaded the area with sophisticated weapons, shooting sporadically and whisked the victims away.
However, five of the 18 abducted victims have escaped from bandits’ enclave, while being herded along bush paths into the forest.
One of the escapees, Engineer Usman Ibrahim, said the kidnappers came into the community in the late hours of Monday evening, while it was raining, and moved from one house to another, apprehending them.
According to him, eighteen of them, including women and children, were among the kidnapped. He said he escaped by running into a rice farm, but three of his family members were taken away by the kidnappers.
Another victim, Alkasim Sai’d, was said to be kidnapped along with two of his uncles. One of the uncles is said to be the caretaker of Alkasim Sai’d’s poultry farm, while the second uncle was said to have come visiting a day before the incident.
The community members, who decried the porous security arrangement, said while the bandits were busy “harvesting” members of their community, they put calls through to all the necessary authorities and individuals all to no avail.
They also said a Police operation vehicle came the following morning long after the kidnappers were far gone.
Kaduna Police spokesman Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Mohammed Jalige, in a press statement however, claimed that the Police rescued the 5 but 12 are still with the bandits, and that the Police are on their trail. The kidnappers are yet to contact any of the families for any probable demand for ransom.