Bandits Abduct Chief Imam, 20 Others In Niger State

Some armed have abducted the Imam of Beni central mosque, Mallam Umar Mohammed in Munya local government area of . This is as twenty other members of the community were also said to have been kidnapped in the process.

According to sources, the bandits, more than 50, who have been moving from one community to another, dispossessing the people of their property including cattle, invaded Beni in Munya local government and Kudami in Paikoro local government areas in the early hour of Wednesday where they caused mayhem.

It was gathered that the bandits met stiff resistance from people of Kudami, while they operated freely in Beni where they looted shops and houses and kidnapped the Chief Imam on his way for a naming ceremony. It was also reported that four people were killed in Beni while several are in critical condition following injuries sustained from gun shots. The victims are said to be receiving treatment at the Kafin Koro general hospital.

The District Head of Beni, Alhaji Jafaru Umar Sarki, who confirmed the attacks to our correspondent in a telephone interview in Minna, said the invasion of the community by the bandits was the second in three days. “They came three days ago and stole over 200 cows from Fulani Men. This morning, they came again in their numbers. As I speak to you now, they are busy looting shops and moving from house to house and collecting people’s property.

“So far, four people have been killed. They shot another boy in the head and we don’t know if he will survive. They are so many in number, I can’t count them and they are all with gun. “The unfortunate thing is that we informed the security agents about it after the first attack but up till now, nobody came to our rescue.

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“What is the essence of security if the people’s lives and property are not save. This community is under siege at the moment and we are helpless”, he lamented. The District Head disclosed that in July last year, two of his daughters were kidnapped on the eve of their marriage but only regained their freedom after the payment of ransom.

Reacting to the attack, the Niger State government described the recent attack on some communities in Munya Local Government area of the state that left four soldiers dead, as sad and unfortunate. The governor called for a fresh, holistic approach to be introduced by the security agencies in tackling the banditry attack that has resurfaced in the state. This was contained in a press statement issued by the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to Governor Abubakar Sani Bello, Mrs. Mary Noel Berje.

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