According to the Kaduna State Police Command, a plot to kidnap 76 people along the Funtua-Zaria Road was thwarted by quick action by the police and the military.
The incident happened on Friday about 11:00 p.m., according to a statement released on Monday in Kaduna by the command’s spokesman, DSP Muhammad Jalige.
According to him, a huge group of armed bandits who were blocking a part of the Funtua-Zaria Road in Gulbala, Giwa Local Government Area, with sophisticated weaponry attempted to kidnap the victim.
The attackers, who had already herded some passengers into the jungle, were foiled, according to Jalige, who claimed that a combined team of police and military personnel mobilized to the scene.
“On reaching the location, a Ford open truck was found and information gathered had it that a large number of passengers on the truck had been moved off the road by the bandits.
“This development engendered an immediate search and rescue operation by the operatives into the adjourning forest.
“In the process, the bandits were encountered and by the sheer force of firepower by the security operatives, they were left with no option than to abort their nefarious mission and take to flight with injuries.
“Thorough combing of the forest over several hours by the crack operatives succeeded in the rescue of a large number of victims totalling 76 comprising males and females of different ages,” he added.
Jalige said preliminary investigation revealed that the victims were passengers on the truck travelling from Sabon Birni Local Government Area of Sokoto State to different destinations when they were abducted.
“Operatives are still on operation within the general area in search of the main truck driver and two other passengers who are yet to be accounted for,” he added.
Jalige said that the Commissioner of Police, Yekini Ayoku, described the development as an important breakthrough and a demonstration of the imperative for strong inter-service collaboration.
He assured that the inter-agency coordination and collaboration would be strengthened to insulate the public space from enemies of the country.