How Abducted LG Chairman Regains Freedom in Nasarawa State

Mr Safiyanu Isah-Andaha, Chairman, Akwanga Local Area of Nasarawa State, who was abducted by gunmen on Monday has regained freedom.

DSP Ramhan Nansel, spokesperson of the  Nasarawa State Police Command confirmed the release of the chairman and three other victims to the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Lafia.

The local government chairman and three others were abducted by gunmen at about 8:30 p.m., in Ningo village, Akwanga LGA.

Nansel said that the chairman and three others were released at about 8:45 p.m., on Tuesday in Andaha village, Akwnaga as a result of sustained pressure from the combined security agencies search-and- rescue team.

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The police spokesperson explained that no ransom was paid to secure the release of the chairman and other victims.

He said that upon receipt of information about the incident on Monday night,  the Commissioner of Police, Umar Nadada, immediately deployed a team, whose effort in collaboration with other sister agencies had paid of with the release of the victims unhurt.

Nansel said that the victims would be reunited with their families after receiving medical attention.

The kidnapping crisis in Nigeria has seen a troubling rise in the abduction of both influential Nigerians and foreign nationals.

These incidents, often driven by monetary motives and Nigeria’s failure to address insecurity, have targeted various individuals, including businessmen, politicians, traditional leaders, and their families, as well as foreign workers and diplomats.

For instance, in March 2020, two Nigerian footballers were kidnapped and later released. The father of the captain of Nigeria’s national football team was also kidnapped hours before a World Cup match in 2018.

Over 50 foreign nationals were kidnapped in Nigeria between 2018 and 2020. These victims were often in Nigeria for business and diplomatic activities. The kidnappings included those of company workers and diplomats, and some victims lost their lives during captivity or rescue efforts.

In 2020 alone, 19 foreigners were taken hostage in various Nigerian states. Incidents included the kidnapping of two Indians in Oyo State, the abduction of a Lebanese national in Ibadan, the seizure of four Chinese nationals in Cross River State, and the kidnapping of two Russians and one Indian in Delta State. Additionally, five crew members of a Ghanaian ship and several Chinese nationals were kidnapped in different incidents across Nigeria.

Samuel Kanu, the head of the Methodist Church in Nigeria, was kidnapped in May 2022 in Abia State. He and several priests were abducted and coerced into paying a ransom of a hundred million Naira​​.


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