Two more students from Greenfield University, Kaduna, who were abducted by bandits over a week ago have been killed by their captors, who are demanding N800 million in ransom.
Three of the students’ bodies, one male and two females, had previously been discovered in a village near the university.
Mr. Samuel Aruwan, Commissioner, Ministry of Internal Security and Home Affairs in Kaduna State, confirmed the killings of the two students yesterday and stated that the state government will keep the citizens informed.
“On a sad note, security agencies have just announced to the Kaduna State government the recovery of two more Greenfield University students killed by armed bandits today (yesterday), Monday, April 26, 2021.
“The bodies have been transported to a mortuary, and the university has been informed of the situation.
“The government expresses its heartfelt condolences to their families and the university administration, and prays for their souls to rest in peace. “The government will keep the public informed about new developments,” he said.
The number of students kidnapped and killed by the kidnappers has now risen to five, with the kidnappers demanding N800 million in ransom from the parents.
Three more varsity students have been abducted in Benue
Bandits abducted three students from the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, FUAM, in Benue State, and ran riot in some parts of the country yesterday, killing the students.
The bandits also attacked the Kofar Kuyambana low-cost housing estate in Zaria, Kaduna State, but were repelled after a violent gun fight in which five of them were captured by a joint effort of the police and vigilante.
Residents of Nasarawa State have been gripped by anxiety, terror, and apprehension as a result of bandit attacks on villages, which have forced an estimated 50,000 farmers to leave their ancestral homes.
They’ve taken up residence in three locations: Agyaragu, Kadarko, and Daudu.
Also yesterday, Niger State Governor Abubakar Sani Bello decried the state’s constant bandit invasions, claiming that no less than 50 villages had been sacked in five local government areas.
The three students were abducted last Saturday night while studying near a lecture hall, according to Translator Nigeria News. Their identities are yet to be published by the institution at the time of this publication.
State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Deputy Superintendent, DSP, Catherine Anene, confirmed the rise, saying the command had already received a report of the incident.
“Information has been received by the school authority that on April 24, 2021, at approximately 10:20 p.m., unknown persons entered the school premises and abducted three of their students who were studying near a lecture theatre,” she said.
“We got the details and we’re looking into it. I know we’re really close, and we’ll keep trying our hardest.
“At the time being, this is all I have for the media, but I would urge the general public to remain calm. We’re doing whatever we can to get to the bottom of the problem and arrest the criminals.
“I assure parents of students that the police will do everything possible to return their children to them. They should maintain their composure and work with us; we will do our best.”
“That is classified information,” the PPPRO said when asked if the kidnappers had made any requests. We obtained information from the school authorities after the incident occurred, and we are investigating it on our own. We don’t have to wait for people to contact us until we start working.
“We deployed our teams as soon as we received the details, and they are working both technically and physically. As a result, we will keep doing our best. We don’t have to wait for connections to form before getting to work. For the time being, we do not know the names of the students who have been affected.”
Prof. Richard Kimbir, the institution’s Vice Chancellor, confirmed the incident and stated that the school was unsure of the number of students involved, but that the number would be determined at the conclusion of a current management meeting.
“We are currently conducting a management meeting and will confirm the number at the conclusion of the meeting,” he said. “For the time being, we are certain of two because the kidnappers have made contact with us.”
Invasion of a housing estate in Zaria
Bandits invading the Kofar Kuyambana low-cost housing estate in Zaria had it rough on Sunday night, when the police, vigilantes, and other security agents engaged them in a fierce gun battle and captured five of them.
Unfortunately, several of the bandits, along with two housewives and some children, were able to flee through the nearby woods.
According to a local, the incident occurred about 9.30 p.m. on Sunday, causing many to have a restless night as the gun fight resulted in chaos, even as some families in the housing estate scurried for safety.
Some Islamic students were caught in the crossfire, but they were soon transported to a Zaria hospital where they are undergoing medical treatment.
According to witnesses, the gunmen arrived on motorcycles and attacked a Customs officer’s home in the housing estate.
“They were firing around 10 p.m., and everybody was scared. They compelled the wife and children of the Customs officer to accompany them. They, on the other hand, left the children but kidnapped their mother,” he explained.
The bandits also raided a neighbouring house and kidnapped another elderly woman, according to the locals.
“Police, other security officers, and the vigilantes did an outstanding job.
They put in a valiant effort as warriors. We are indebted to Almighty Allah and extend our heartfelt gratitude.
“Two robbers were apprehended last night, and three more were apprehended yesterday morning,” the local stated.
The latest attack elicited no official response, but the Kaduna Police Public Relations Officer confirmed it.
Residents in 13 communities in Nasarawa are fleeing fear.
Similarly, in Nasarawa State, fear and anxiety are growing as bandit attacks continue to ravage villages, forcing over 50,000 farmers to leave their ancestral homes and seek refuge elsewhere.
As a result of the attacks in some parts of the province, residents and farmers in around 13 settlements have been displaced.
The most recent attacks occurred in Doma, Keana, where dozens of people were reportedly slaughtered and several more were wounded.
Dooshima, Antsa, Dooka, Angwan Yara, Ikyayior, Targema, Tse Tor, Chia, Umurayi, Dooga, Gindan Rail, Ajikamaka, and Ankoma are among the deserted villages in Nasarawa State’s Ekye development district, Doma South.
Victims of the rampaging herdsmen are reportedly seeking refuge in Kardoroko, Keana LGA, and Agyaragu, while others are seeking refuge with relatives and friends in Benue State’s Guma local government area.
Peter Ahemba, President of the Tiv Development Association, TIDA, characterised the situation as pathetic, adding that the victims had been placed in excruciating pain as a result of the crisis that struck the communities in Doma South three days ago.
Moses Utondu, Senior Special Assistant to Governor on Conflict Resolution, addressed the displaced persons in Kardoroko and Agyaragu yesterday, urging them to remain calm and assuring them that Governor Abdullahi Sule will look into their situation.
“So far, my assessment has shown that our people are genuinely displaced; it is not a matter of speculations, but my courage and comfort comes from the fact that our governor is a peacemaker. We’ve come to see things for ourselves, and we’ll report back to the governor, who will act quickly,” he said.
‘We awoke to attacks by herdsmen.’
Cletus Wanshima, a survivor of the Ajikamaka village attack, told Translator Nigeria News in the Kardoroko IDP camp that they were attacked by herdsmen last Saturday when they awoke.
“They ambushed our people and began killing them, forcing us to flee for our lives; they have taken over all of our homes and are burning and looting our belongings.
“They stormed our neighbourhoods, slashing people with cutlasses and shooting others with their AK-47s. In my presence, they slaughtered a woman in Dooka village, and they slaughtered a man in Ikyayior village,” he said.
He bemoaned the dire situation in the camp and urged the Nasarawa State government to assist them.
“We’ve been sleeping on the bare floor since Saturday when we arrived; we don’t have mattresses or mats,” he said. “It’s a tough situation since we’re exposed to mosquitoes, insects, and reptiles both during the day and at night,” he added.
Gov. Sule: “Killings are inexcusable.”
Meanwhile, Nasarawa State Governor, Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, has characterised the killing of innocent people during the weekend attack on Ajimaka Village in the state’s Dome Local Government Area as a reprehensible, callous, and inexcusable act.
“The assault that does not spare women and children bears the signature of devilish forces bent on truncating the relative peace in the state,” Governor Sule said in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Ibrahim Adra.
While assuring the citizens of the state of his commitment to combat insecurity, Sule stated that security operatives have since begun investigations to uncover the criminals and prosecute them in accordance with the laws of the country.
“My heartfelt condolences and prayers go out to the families of those who have died. I encourage them, as well as the rest of our people, to have confidence in this administration’s ability to uphold the rule of law, Peace and stability across the state.” “Calm and support for law enforcement officers in the collective war against evil,” the governor said.
Gov. Bello laments the desertification of 50 villages.
In a related development, Niger State Governor Abubakar Sani Bello has once again decried the incessant invasion of communities in the state by bandits, claiming that no less than 50 villages have been sacked in the state’s five local government areas.
He said that this was causing the state to face not only a humanitarian but also a financial crisis.
As a result, he urged all stakeholders in the state’s twenty-five local government areas to get ready to raise more funds for their councils’ and the state’s economic development.
“As we talk, there are at least 50 villages abandoned across five local governments,” he said. Where do we get the money to provide for them if we spend 80% of our resources on those who don’t contribute much to the system?
“Right now, we’re dealing with humanitarian and security issues, and all of these things need money that we don’t have, so the only way we’re going to make it is to raise our IGR.
“Apart from other local governments, we already have over 3,000 IDPs in Minna.”
Buhari will deal with criminals, according to the APC
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has expressed its commitment to deal decisively with criminal elements, according to the All Progressives Congress, APC.
Sen. John James Akpanudoedehe, the party’s National Secretary and Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee, made the pledge in a statement released in Abuja yesterday.
The party noted that the country’s insecurity had manifested itself in Boko Haram’s terrorist and criminal activities, as well as robbers, kidnappers, cow rustlers, and, most recently, highly condemnable attacks on security formations in some states.
“These are the facts of life, and the All Progressives Congress (APC) will not play politics with matters of life and national security.
“As the government’s progressive bloc, we are fully concentrated on finding and prosecuting the perpetrators and backers of this hydra-headed insecurity beast, as well as consolidating our visible growth strides. Although the party sympathises with all those who have been affected by the security incidents, it also urges all to unite against insecurity and crime, regardless of how it is manifested,” the party stated.
Nigerians can only enjoy the new agricultural revolution in protection, according to the group, which has seen the country achieve self-sufficiency in rice and other staple foods.
“We can only enjoy the current infrastructure revolution in protection, which has seen the renovation, development, and reconstruction of over 13,000 kilometres of vital federal highways, the construction of thousands of affordable and acceptable housing units, and, of course, the ongoing national railway projects that are profitably linking cities and towns across the country.
“Once again, we must not fall for the plot of sectarian opportunists and unpatriotic partisans who have flooded the public sphere with divisive rhetoric in order to advance their selfish plot to manipulate the security situation for nefarious benefit. It poses a threat to national security, and we must not allow them to succeed. The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is criminalising violence, not race. “We are in a state of emergency,” the president said to the newly named service chiefs. As your allegiance is to the nation, be patriotic and serve it well.”
“As they carry out their constitutional responsibility to protect citizens’ lives, property, and territorial integrity, our security services deserve our continued support and cooperation. We have a responsibility to be vigilant in both our private and public areas, and to report unusual or suspicious behaviour. The government of President Muhammadu Buhari will continue to strategically deploy all state resources to ensure public safety.
“For the country’s development, we must avoid the antics and actions of unpatriotic and sectarian opportunists fanning divisive embers, foster peaceful coexistence, avoid bitterness, and unite against instability and crime.
“From the Ogbomosho taxi driver who was born and raised in Kaduna State to the Igbo trader who is the Chairman of the Ladipo spare parts market association in Lagos State to the Kano-born Hausa businessman who invests in and builds sugar, cement, and petrochemical plants across the country, employing thousands of people.
“Despite our cultural, religious, and ethical disparities, we are more patriotic, alike, and united than bigots, sectarian opportunists, and unpatriotic partisans would have us believe. We all have a stake in our country’s security and making Nigeria work for everyone,” the APC said.