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Gov Otti: Over 80 bodies recovered from kidnappers’ den in Abia

Governor Alex Otti of Abia State says over 80 bodies have been recovered from kidnappers’ den in the state. Otti said security intelligence showed that…

Governor Alex Otti of Abia State says over 80 bodies have been recovered from kidnappers’ den in the state.

Otti said security intelligence showed that the ransoms paid for kidnapped victims were always dropped off around Umuchieze Cattle Market in Lokpanta of Umunneochi Local Government Area (LGA).

He said this was discovered after several electronic equipment were installed in different parts of the state.

The governor spoke during the monthly media parley at the Government House, Umuahia.

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“We installed electronic equipment to find out what is happening in every part of the state. A few weeks ago, we found that a lot of the ransom that was paid for kidnapping ended up somewhere around Umunneochi LGA.

“We decided to dominate the place and what we saw was shocking. In less than 48 hours, we recovered over 80 dead bodies around the cattle market, and we recovered 20 headless bodies decomposing bodies which include adults and children.

“We recovered uncountable skeletons of people who had been killed and left to decompose still around that axis,” he said.

He expressed the resolve of the state government to rid Abia of all forms of crime because ”no government succeeds in the face of insecurity.”

Otti said the government would neither condone nor get involved in supporting insecurity in any form or manner.

He added that different forms of crime such as gun running, prostitution, narcotics trade and heavy use of substance were highly operational in the market.

He said that investigations were still ongoing to ascertain the people involved in the crime.

Otti said that this informed the decision of the state government to change the cattle market into a general market.

He said that the state government had taken a step to secure the market by fencing it and issuing a directive for the market to be a non-residential daily market, which would open from 6:00 am through 6:00 pm.

Otti said in line with government’s directives, the market would no longer be exclusively for the sale of cattle, but it would operate as a general market where other items would be sold.

“Now some persons said that we had sent away the Hausa community living in Abia, but remember when we saw the skeletons, we did not know which skeletons belonged to either Hausa or Yoruba.”

‘The spread of the false information led to a norther group issuing a quit notice to Igbo living in the North to leave and come back to East.

The governor explained that a meeting was held with the group, during which explanations were given about government’s intention.

“We challenged them that anybody that is not in support of what we are doing must be a criminal, then they saw reason with us and reversed themselves,” he added.

Otti said that the state government was desirous to maintain peace and stability to encourage the people of Abia to move about in the state, especially during the Yuletide without any fear of harassments.

“I can assure you that Umunneochi is calm,” he added.

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