Nigeria: Gunmen Abduct Former Rivers Government Official, Police Arrest One

Nigeria: Gunmen Abduct Former Rivers Government Official, Police Arrest One (News Central TV)

Mr Justice Azunda, a protocol officer to the immediate past Chief of Staff, Rivers State Government House, Chief Emeka Woke, was on Sunday kidnapped.

It was gathered that the gunmen invaded Isiodu community in the state where Azunda and others were in a meeting, and shot indiscriminately before taking him away.

Speaking on the incident on Monday, the Chairman of Emuoha Local Government Area, Dr Chidi Lloyd, claimed a suspected kidnapper who had been declared wanted was responsible for the kidnap.

Lloyd said, “In what I describe as a sad incident yesterday (Sunday) afternoon, some kidnappers invaded the Isiodu community where Justice Azunda and some other persons were holding a meeting and they shot indiscriminately.

“In the ensuing melee, Justice Azunda was abducted.”

He charged members of a local vigilante group called Emuoha Local Government Vigilante Service to assist security agencies and ensure the victim’s early release.

“Members of the Emuoha Vigilante are up and doing in recent times. They have been in the bush. I have charged them once again to ensure that Justice Azunda is released unhurt,” he said.

He also announced a N2m reward for people with information on how to apprehend the kidnap suspects just as he ordered an immediate ban on commercial motorcycle operations in the area.

He said, “I want to announce the ban on the movement of motorcycles in the local government from 6pm to 6am.

“The ban will come into force from June 5, 2023. I know the hardship that this will cause.”

Meanwhile, the spokesperson for the state police command, Grace Iringe-Koko, said a suspect linked to the kidnap had been arrested and was helping the police in their investigation.

She disclosed that the state Commissioner of Police, Emeka Nwonyi, had deployed the command’s tactical teams to the area to ensure Azunda’s early release from captivity.

“The suspect has been transferred to the State Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department where he is helping the police with the investigation.

“Efforts are on to ensure the kidnap victim is released unconditionally and unhurt. As we speak, the CP has ordered tactical deployment to the area,” she said.


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