Terrorists Abduct 30 Girls in Katsina Community

• We’ve rescued 28, say police 

Francis Sardauna in Katsina 

No fewer than 30 young girls have been abducted by gunmen suspected to be terrorists in Kasai community in Batsari Local Government Area of Katsina State.

A resident of the community, Sani Mohammed, told THISDAY in a telephone interview on Tuesday, that the hostages were kidnapped at a nearby farmland while searching for firewood for domestic use on Monday.

Mohammed whose son, Adamu, is among the abductees, said the victims were ambushed by the motorcycle-riding terrorists and whisked them away to a yet-to-be-identified destination.

He said: “Yesterday (Monday) our children numbering over 30 went to our nearby farms for their usual search of firewood for cooking but they were ambushed by bandits who were crossing the community to their hideouts.

“They (bandits) kidnapped 30 children that went to the bush in search of the firewood. We had the voices of our children screaming for help so we mobilised and went there but the bandits overpowered us.”

He explained that efforts by members of the community in collaboration with vigilantes to rescue the abducted children from their abductors were futile because the hoodlums shot sporadically in the air to scare them.

Mohammed said the hooligans marched the 34 hostages pulled from different farmlands into their enclaves because security forces did not arrive at the scene until several hours later despite distress calls to the police and Nigerian Army.

He added that Kasai was once a bustling agrarian community but now sparsely populated and roads and farmlands are often avoided because of rampant kidnappings and killings by the criminals.

However, the state police command has announced the rescue of 28 out of the 30 children abducted by the terrorists in the community.

The command’s Public Relations Officer, ASP Abubakar Aliyu, in a statement, said the victims were rescued unhurt by operatives of the command deployed in the scene of the incident by the state Commissioner of Police, Aliyu Musa.

The statement read: “On the 1st of April, 2024, at about 1030 hrs, about 28 girls who went to the outskirts of Kasai village, Batsari LGA, Katsina State, with intent to fetch firewood, were abducted by kidnappers.

“Upon receipt of the report, the Commissioner of Police, Katsina State Police Command, CP Aliyu Abubakar Musa, psc+, swiftly deployed operatives to the scene, tasked with the unhurt rescue of the victims.

“The abductors, following the escalation of pressure and the concerted actions of the command in collaboration with all relevant security stakeholders in the state, ultimately released all the victims on the same day at about 2240hrs.”