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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Gunmen abduct two FRSC officers, confirms FRSC

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The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in Ebonyi State, has confirmed the abduction of two of its officers by gunmen along the Abakaliki-Enugu federal highway.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the road has recently become nightmarish for commuters due to incessant abductions by gunmen.

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The most affected axis is the Nkalagu (Ebonyi) and Idodo (Enugu) axis of the road as the cases of the abductions keep increasing daily.

The Sector Commander of the FRSC in Ebonyi State, Henry Igwe, told journalists on Tuesday in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, that both officers were abducted on 8 March.

Mr Igwe remarked that both officers concluded their duties at the corps’ Nkalagu office and were abducted as they returned to Enugu.

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“Contacts were made, and it was established by their families that they never got home.

“The families said that some people contacted them that they were kidnappers and were demanding ransom.

“The negotiations are between the families and kidnappers and as an organisation, we have been doing the much we can,” he said.

FRSC headquarters, security agencies notified

The sector commander said his office has informed its headquarters of the development and formally reported to relevant security agencies.

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“This is the much I know of the situation, and we are optimistic that they will be released by whoever is holding them.

“The situation is very unfortunate and the insecurity in the country has made everyone vulnerable.

“Our vulnerability is higher because we find ourselves on the road always, exposed to these sorts of dangers,” he said.

He noted that it has not been established that the personnel were either alive or dead but the fact remained that they have not been seen.

“The core security agencies said that efforts to find the personnel are still being made and they were not among those that were released.

“Not much has been heard positively from their families and though the situation is still scary, we pray that luck will shine on us and them.”

‘Worrisome’

Chinwe Oli, a commuter who plies the road regularly, described the situation as worrisome and chided the governments of both states for being nonchalant over the development.

“What will it take both governments to mobilise relevant security outfits to flush the hoodlums from the little space they occupy as their operational base?” she queried.

State government, police

Jude Okpor, the Ebonyi State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, dismissed the insinuation that the state government was nonchalant about the situation.

“The state government has surmounted several security challenges in the state and is resolutely protecting the lives and properties of its citizens.

“The matter has inter-state connectivity and the government has initiated measures with its affected sister-state, to nip it in the bud,” he said.

Joshua Ukandu, a deputy superintendent of police and Police Public Relations Officer in Ebonyi State, urged families of victims to report such incidents to the command to enable it to establish whether the incident happened at the Ebonyi State axis of the road.

“The situation is more of an Enugu State issue and information on it should be sought from the Enugu command of the force.

“I believe some steps are being taken to combat it, but our safer highway teams stationed at the affected axis always assist commuters to cross safely from the area,” he said. (NAN)

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