BREAKING: Bandits kidnap 80 children in Zamfara

Armed men suspected to be bandits have abducted no fewer than 80 children from the Tsafe Local Government Area of Zamfara State.

The children who were between the ages of 12 and 17, were reportedly in the bush fetching firewood at around 8:00 a.m., Friday, April 7, 2023, when the bandits rounded them up and led them away into the forest.

The parents of the abducted children who spoke to BBC Hausa expressed their shock and anguish over the incident.

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They revealed that the bandits had not yet reached out to them to make any demands as of the time of reporting.

In a related development, the Kaduna State Government has said that a report published by a newspaper, alleging that bandits kidnapped scores of citizens on the Abuja-Kaduna Highway was false and misleading, as no such incident occurred on the highway which straddles five LGAs across Kaduna and Niger states.

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Samuel Aruwan ,Commissioner, Ministry of Internal Security and Home Affairs, Kaduna State,in a statement; explained that an excerpt from the inaccurate report with the headline ‘Bandits Abduct Travellers On Abuja-Kaduna Highway’ reads: “Scores of travellers were abducted after bandits opened fire on motorists in Iche community, some few kilometres away from Kagarko town along the Abuja-Kaduna highway.”

Aruwan  stated  that ” contrary to the above, reports received from security agencies and the Kagarko Local Government Council indicated that armed men barricaded the Gwaje village axis of the Kagarko-Jere Road on Wednesday 5th April 2023, and kidnapped an unspecified number of occupants from two vehicles, a Volkswagen Golf Wagon (Reg No. LGT228XA) and Volkswagen Passat (Reg No. FSK556AV). The vehicles were subsequently found empty.”

“The coordinates of the scene of the incident (Gwaje village) are 9°29’34″N 7°39’18″E, which give a location nowhere close to, or even off the Abuja-Kaduna Highway as reported.”

“From available facts, the incident did not occur at Iche as reported by the media. The description which gives Kagarko town as being along Abuja-Kaduna highway is likewise inaccurate.”

“The Kaduna State Government expresses its displeasure over the misleading piece of reportage which has unfortunately gained undue traction on social media and beyond.”

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“The Government views inaccurate and misleading reports as a major disservice to the campaign against banditry being prosecuted by officers and men of security forces, at the risk of their very lives.”

“The Kaduna State Government is following up closely with security agencies on all issues regarding security and safety of citizens,” the statement added.

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