Banditry In Niger: Yakila Community Remains Deserted Three weeks After District Head Kidnap

Olabode Adaramola

… as Gov. Abubakar  Bello pays sympathy call , swears  to rescue the embattled Traditional Chief

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.

National Wires learnt  that at the time of the attack by the bandits 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 incidence occurred.

But when the State  Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani  Bello paid a condolence  visit to the area on Monday, he met a deserted and almost a community 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 road sides  and other major streets in the community  were nowhere to be seen around the community earlier noted for it’s 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 State  Governor from the windows within their houses.

This reporter who was on the convoy  of the State Governor,Alhaji  Abubakar Sani Bello  during the visit also learnt   that the notorious armed  bandits only spoke to 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 since the incident occurred, fueling fears that the kidnaped 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 Sead, 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 in a brief chat that  the bandits have actually demanded for a ransom of N4million.

Addressing some members of the community in the kidnapped District Head’s Palace, the State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello said   the government has intelligence report that the bandits have informants among the people, stressing that the report was reinforced by the fact that less than 24 hours after the abduction of the District Head, had allegedly  held a meeting designed to set up a local security outfit for the community, shortly after which the bandits struck.

The Governor B 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 Sani Bello also  assured the people that government was on top of the situation, hilighting   that very soon the fleeing bandits would  be arrested, prosecuted  and  be brought to Book.

Post Author: Friday Ekeoba