NEWS

Fear Mounts As Kidnappers’ Ransom Deadline For A’Ibom NYSC Members Expires Today

Families of NYSC members from Akwa Ibom State, who were abducted in Zamfara State by gunmen over two weeks ago while en route to the Sokoto State Orientation Camp, are currently gripped by fear as the deadline set by the kidnappers for ransom payment expires today.

Some of the relatives of the eight victims still in captivity, based in Uyo, revealed that they have received calls from the abductors, demanding an additional N8 million as ransom, with the ominous warning that failure to comply would result in dire consequences.

This concerning situation persists, even as the Akwa Ibom State Government has not yet addressed the hardships faced by the victims and their families during this trying time.

A relative of one of the victims narrated that “The young man left Akwa Ibom on August 16, 2023, with other corps members, and on August 17 night, they kidnapped them on their way to Sokoto.

“On Friday, they contacted us. That first day, those people that kidnapped them demanded N4 million ransom from each of them (victims). They were eight NYSC members and the AKTC driver made them nine.

“The mother of the boy (name withheld) started crying because as a poor widow and petty trader, she could not afford such amount of money. The following day, Saturday, the abductors contacted us again and decided all parents of their victims meet to jointly raise N10 million.

“The families have been able to raise N5 million and sent to them. It would have remained N5 million, but they later requested money for three power bikes. And we have checked each powerbike cost N1 million plus.

“They spoke to us again Monday this week to give till Wednesday, September 6, as deadline for the remaining amount to be paid. So, we are looking at N8 million, including money for the powerbikes. And they warned that we should try and meet the deadline, if we don’t want to hear bad news.”

It has been observed that following the protests by the families of the victims at the state House of Assembly regarding their predicament, the government has not taken any measures to facilitate the release of the abducted individuals.

Additionally, another family member of the kidnapped victims, who goes by the name Mfon, expressed his distress, mentioning that they have been feeling anxious ever since the abductors set today’s deadline.

He said: “We have been moving around to see people who can assist us in anyway to raise this amount. Just this morning, village head and the wife gave us N300,000 to support us.

“We are still looking for N700,000 to make N1 million on our part because each of the families must contribute N1 million to complete the outstanding N8 million ransom.”

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