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Abuja Residents Say Environs Safe Despite Kidnappings, Killings

Residents at the outskirts of the Abuja metropolis say that the environs are safe despite news of kidnappings and killings along Abuja-Kaduna expressway making the rounds on news outlets and social media.

A housing agent at Maple apartment told WikkiTimes that the apartment was safe for dwelling and that there were no kidnappings recently in the area.

“Everywhere is okay; they don’t kidnap anybody here. Everywhere is peaceful. There are ten police stations here and all of them are active,” he said.

The apartment, situated at Plot 728 Olu Agabi Close, Jabi, Abuja, is triangularly surrounded by three police stations – DSS Quaters Utako, Nigeria Police Divisional Headquarters and Jabi Police Barracks.

Along the Jabi-Gwarinpa axis, the Maple apartment is 0.44km away from the DSS Utako, 0.11km away from the Nigeria Police Divisional Headquarters and 0.24km away from Jabi Police Barracks.

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DSS Quarters Utako, Nigeria Police Divisional Headquarters and Jabi Police Barracks intersecting at Maple apartment, Jabi-Gwarinpa, Abuja [Photo: Segun Ige]

Another resident, Adamu Ibrahim, who is a Firstmonie agent in Mpape, Abuja, assured the journalist the place was safe having told him (Adamu) he was coming to carry-out a Point of Sale (PoS) transaction at his station.

Adamu, who is 0.03km away from the singular Zuba Police Station, said, “There’s no problem if you are coming to Zuba. If you’re very close just come or call and we’ll come with a bike to pick you up.”

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#Najeebahandhersisters and others

On Friday, the FCT Police Command confirmed the arrest of Chinaza Phillip, described as “a notorious Abuja kidnapper”, from the Kaduna State Police Command.

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This was coming 18 days after Nabeeha Al-Kadriyar and her sisters were kidnapped from their home along the Kaduna-Abuja expressway on January 2, 2024.

On Wednesday, January 3, 2024, an X user, Adamu_Asiya_, who has earnestly been crowdsourcing funds for the release of the girls, wrote, “Please pray for my sisters and uncle when you see this. Nabeeha, her sisters, and her dad were kidnapped in their house last night. We lost an uncle in the process. Your duas are needed.”

Asiya, who identified as Najeebah’s cousin, came on X announcing that the kidnappers had killed Nabeeha after failing to meet the deadline for payment of the ransom of N65m and after their father was released.

Nabeeha’s cousin Aisha’s X post on January 3

In an interview with the BBC on Monday, Asiya described Nabeeha, a 400l student of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, as a “super-bright, smart and kind” sister who loved to write poetry and read books by the American author Jodi Picoult.

On the 6th of January 2024, a group of 14 girls, aged 15 and below, was also abducted along the Abuja-Kaduna highway from a holiday, prompting reactions largely against the Tinubu administration from the Arewa community.

Kidnappings: The police – a suspect

Through Google Earth satellite imagery, WikkiTimes could establish that the Nigeria Police along Abuja-Kaduna expressway may be involved in the kidnapping incidents, specifically around Mpape community.

Although Mpape Police Station is stationed in the remote area, it is 2.39km away from the Abuja-Kaduna expressway with clear hideouts and pathways indicating a place of ambush and retreat for kidnappers.

Here, the longest yellow line is connecting Mpape Police Station and the Usuma Lower Dam, 11.63km away from it. The station, meanwhile, is 2.39km away from the expressway
The street view of Usuma Lower Dam, one of the strongest places WikkiTimes believes the kidnappers could be operating from

A resident at Mpape, who asked not to be named, told WikkiTimes that the police officers are aware of the kidnappings but pretend not to know and that they “come together to perpetuate this act”.

“It’s not only in Abuja-Kaduna this is happening; it’s all over Nigeria. Some of these kidnappers get approval from the police before carrying out their operation,” he said.

He continued: “You will see police mounting roadblocks and they will see kidnappings happening in front of them. Until when the whole operation is done, you’ll see them going with their siren cars arresting the innocent people.

“Sometimes police are aware of these things but pretend not to know. Some of these guys who have been dismissed from the police or other armed forces are the ones that come together to perpetuate this act.”

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