By David Odama
LAFIA–NO Fewer than 22 persons have been kidnapped within one week in Nasarawa state.
Out of the number, 17 were kidnapped while praying in a mosque in Toto local government, four in lafia and one in Nasarawa local government of Nasarawa state.
Latest in the series is the invasion of a private hospital belonging to a former member of the Nasarawa state House of Assembly, Hon. Elisha Agwadu in lafia at about 8pm Friday night.
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The gunmen who came shooting sporadically to scare the residents, gain access into the hospital, beat the staff of the hospital on duty, relatives of the patients and whisked away a staff of the hospital, Cletus Igube and three others.
Speaking with our Correspondent who visited the hospital in the outsketch of lafia city, the Director of the hospital who is a former member of the Nasarawa state House of Assembly, Hon. Elisha Agwadu disclosed the the kidnappers came thirty minutes after he left the hospital.
According to him, “the kidnappers contacted me this morning at about 6.30 and told me that this was the 26th times they have come after me without getting me. All we are demanding from you now if you don’t want your staff and others to be killed is N20m”, Agwadu claimed.
“They put a call through to me again at about 12.20pm demanding for a ransom of N20m and I have told them to give me up to 6pm. They have asked me not to contact the police for anything” Agwadu stated
Meanwhile, a library staff with the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, three women, and 13 others were last Tuesday night kidnapped by gunmen at a Mosque at the Gwargwada-Sabo community in Gadabuke development area of Nasarawa state.
The 17 people were said to have been kidnapped when Muslims in the community were observing Isha’i prayers. The ABUSITES could not immediately verify the identity of the ABU Staff.
According to an eye witness, “the gunmen took positions and started shooting at different directions, after other gangs surrounded the mosque and whisked away the victims into the bush”.
While the chief Imam of the community Mosque and children were reportedly spared.
a resident of the community who identified himself as Usman, said Families of the kidnapped residents have established contact with the kidnappers, who are demanding N1m ransom for each victim.
“They first demanded N50m on the first day, but as we keep on pleading and negotiating with them, they now said we should pay N1 million on each victim,” he said.
Attempts to get the police confirmation proved abortive as the Command Public Relations Officer, ASP Ramhan Anansel could not respond to my calls.