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Kidnappers on rampage in Jos, environs


• Fear Kept Many Indoors During Yuletide

The kidnapping of innocent citizens, mostly women and children, has become rampant in Jos and many parts of Plateau State, as the criminal business peaked during Christmas, while Governor Simon Lalong travelled abroad. The kidnappers succeeded in taking the wife of the Deputy Director of Press, Government House, on New Year day. Fortunately, she was released.

This abduction was the climax of a series of kidnapping operations during the Yuletide in and around Jos, as innocent citizens were cautious and alert for fear of kidnappers, daredevil cultists, and other hoodlums, who literally took over the social space in the state, and forced those desirous of fun to sit at home.

Before the New Year day kidnap, there were cases of children taken from their parents’ homes in Bukuru, Jos Metropolis, where the Theological College of Northern Nigeria (TCNN) is located.

Others also took place successfully behind the old Government House, Rayfield; in Zarmaganda, another behind Jossy Royal Hotel, along Bukuru Road, also on Rukuba Road, Kufang, and Dadin Kowa area, all within the Jos-Bukuru Metropolitan area.

Although it could not be ascertained the terms of negotiations between the kidnappers and abductors of wife of the Deputy Director of Press, it was gathered that parents had to pay between N300,000 to N500,000 to secure the release of their wards.

In the southern part of the state, especially Quaán Pan Local Council, perpetrators of the heinous crime have reduced it to a roadside show, as the bargain for the release of a victim could be as low as N10,000.In Jos, many Christian worshippers could not observe the cross-over night mass on December 31 in their various churches because kidnappers, cultists, and sundry hoodlums were on the prowl, prepared to make the best of the night.

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Simon Lalong
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