Image used for illustrative purpose only

Bandits attack Zamfara, kidnapped over a dozen

Armed bandits on Monday attacked a community in Zamfara State, kidnapping over a dozen people.

The victims include a new bride, and some nursing mothers.

The incident happened at Zurmi Local Government Area at about 11:45 p.m.

Residents said the heavily armed bandits shot sporadically into the air, scaring residents.

Falalu Ashafa, a teacher at Government Girls Secondary School, Zurmi, said his wife, mother, two children and nanny are among those kidnapped in the Monday attack.

He said after the attack, 26 persons, including three lactating mothers, and a newly-weded bride were missing and believed to have been kidnapped.

The Zurmi attack is coming two days after a similar attack was coordinated on a viewing centre at Birnin Magaji. In that attack, seven people were kidnapped and are yet to be released as at Tuesday morning.

The security agencies in Zamfara are yet to make any official statement on the Saturday attack.

Killings and kidnapping for ransom have continued in Zamfara communities, despite security reinforcement and subsequent change of the police commissioner in the state.

When contacted, the Zamfara police spokesperson, Mohammed Shehu, said the police repelled the Monday night attack but later realised that 13 people had been kidnapped.

He said the hoodlums stormed Majema area in Zurmi with a view to causing mayhem and breakdown of law and order in the community.

“On the spur of the moment, combined teams of Police/Military and Civilian JTF Stationed in Zurmi responded promptly and repelled the attack.

“As a result, the attackers were forced to beat a retreat back to Dumburum forest. Sadly enough, 13 Persons were later discovered to have been kidnapped by the attackers.

“The command in its efforts to ensure the successful rescue of the Kidnapped Victims dispatched a Search and Rescue Operation team to Complement the effort of the Joint Security Personnel Currently on extensive bush combing.

“The press will be duly briefed on the outcome of the rescue operation.

“The command appeals for continued support and cooperation with the police and other security agencies by giving timely and useful information on activities of criminal elements in the state.”