Gunmen who kidnapped 11 passengers on Friday along the Nasarawa-Benue borders have reportedly demanded N50m ransom for each of the victims.
PUNCH Metro had reported that the passengers boarded a bus in Jos, Plateau State, and were heading for Onitsha, Anambra State, when they were attacked.
Our correspondent learnt that the kidnappers first contacted the transport company and demanded N50m ransom for each of the abducted passengers.
The hoodlums were said to have later called the families of the victims to demand the money.
Some of the families told our correspondent that they were struggling to raise the money after a series of negotiations with the kidnappers.
A man, whose mother was among the victims and spoke on condition of anonymity for security purposes, said it had been difficult living without her.
He said, “My mother was going for a burial when they were attacked and kidnapped. Even the vehicle carrying the corpse they were taking home was in front of their bus when the incident happened. After the ambulance passed the spot where the gunmen were hiding, the bus carrying my mother and the other passengers was stopped by the kidnappers.”
A father, who also asked not to be identified, said his son was returning to school when he was kidnapped.
“He was sick when ASUU called off its strike. He told me that he would manage to go back to school just to know the situation of things in the school. His kidnap has been traumatic for us,” he added.
The Plateau State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Alabo Alfred, referred our correspondent to the Benue State Police Command, saying the incident did not happen in his jurisdiction.
Two Killed As Gunmen Attack Police Checkpoint In Ebonyi
Two persons have been confirmed dead following another attack by unknown gunmen at a Police Checkpoint along the Presco junction axis of the ever-busy Enugu-Abakaliki expressway in Abakalik, Ebonyi State.
The incident occured at about 8pm on Monday night and created panic and tension along the major expressway as motorists and commuters scampered for safety while the gun battle lasted.
A source, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said that the gunmen operated on a motorcycle to attack the police officers at their duty post.
The gunmen on arriving at the junction opened fire on the policemen on duty while the policemen responded immediately resulting to sporadic exchange of gunshots. When the gun duel subsided, people who went close to the scene observed that a policeman was shot dead while one of the gunmen was also killed.
When contacted, the Ebonyi State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Chris Anyanwu, confirmed the incident.
SP Anyanwu said one policeman and an unknown gunman were shot dead during the clash between the Police and the unknown gunmen on Monday night.
In other news, parents of students at different Unity Schools in Ebonyi State have demanded for the immediate closure of the schools following the threat by the outlawed Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) to shut down the South-East for five days.
The parents, who trooped to the schools in the early hours of on Tuesday, demanded that their children and wards be released to them on or before Thursday this week before the commencement of the sit-at-home order, which the secessionist group announced will start on Friday.
A parent, Mrs. Grace Ofor, said: “We are here to demand for the release of our children. They have finished their exams and I don’t see the reason why they are still keeping them here. IPOB announced that they will shut down the South-East from Friday this week till Wednesday next week and nobody knows how long it will last, so we urge them to let our kids go.”
Following the sit-at-home order, the Catholic Bishop of Abakaliki has directed that Holy Rosary School in the state be closed on Thursday and the students vacate the school.
Similarly, many ceremonies including burials, weddings and other social activities in the state have been put on hold by their organizers.
Womb Raiders Cut Mexican Woman Open To Steal Foetus
A pregnant Mexican woman died after she was cut open by two assailants who stole her unborn baby, authorities said Monday.
The alleged perpetrators were arrested with a newborn in their possession, the attorney general’s office in the eastern state of Veracruz said in a statement.
The suspects, a man and a woman, appeared before a judge on Monday accused of kidnapping and femicide.
They allegedly sliced open the victim to extract the fetus because the woman attacker was unable to have children herself, an official linked to the investigation told AFP on condition of anonymity.
The victim was lured to her death through social media with a promise of clothes for her baby, relatives told local media, which said that it was the third case of its kind in recent years.
More than 3,700 women were murdered in violence-plagued Mexico in 2021, of which around 1,000 were classified as femicides, according to official figures.
Vandals Kill Vigilante, Destroy Six Power Transmission Towers In Rivers
Six power transmission towers belonging to the Niger Delta Power Holding Company have been destroyed by vandals in Rivers State, while a member of a vigilante group in the affected area was shot dead by the miscreants, the NDPHC announced on Sunday.
It said the unrelenting attacks on power infrastructure by economic saboteurs leading to the inability of Nigerians to access adequate electricity for economic growth had continued unabated.
“In recent times, several projects being embarked upon by Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited have been attacked and contractors either killed or maimed by attackers,” the power firm stated in a statement issued in Abuja by its Media Adviser, Adesanya Adejokun.
It stated that on September 3, 2022, some miscreants attacked and vandalised the 330kV DC Afam – Onne Transmission Line in Gbake community
It said the vandals cut down four transmission towers (T19, T20, T21 and T22), dismantled and carted them away, adding that on October 10, 2022, the miscreants attacked and vandalised two additional towers on the same 330kV DC Afam – Onne Transmission Line.
“During a third attempt, luck, however, ran out on them as efforts of vigilante members, buoyed by security operatives paid off, resulting in the arrest of nine of the miscreants. They have since been charged to court to face the full wrath of the law,” the NDPHC stated.
It added, “During routine patrol in the night of November 25, 2022, vigilantes again encountered vandals along the same Afam-Onne 330kV DC Transmission Line. The vigilantes called for military reinforcement but before help came, one of the guards was shot and later died.