Over 100 people were kidnapped while travelling on the Birnin-Gwari-Kaduna highway over four days last week.

Reports indicate gunmen wearing military fatigues blocked the highway, stopping vehicles and taking passengers into the surrounding bush. At least ten vehicles, including buses and trucks, were stopped and emptied in this fashion.

Najia News quotes the local Emir’s media aid, Isah Muhammad Galadima, as saying that ‘the kidnappers took advantage of a lull in security on the road as a result of local elections taking place at the time.’

Kaduna’s Commissioner of Police, Austin Iwar, initially downplayed the abductions, telling Reuters that ‘he would have been informed if there had been reports of such attacks, adding that he would investigate.’

The National Union of Road Transport Workers has advised members to avoid the area.

The families of the kidnapped have started to receive ransom demands. A hunt of the hostages and the kidnappers is underway.


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