Armed men suspected to be kidnappers abducted no fewer than 10 people in the early hours of Thursday at Tungan-Maje, a community between Zuba and Giri, on the Kaduna-Abuja-Lokoja highway.
A source in the area, who spoke to City News on Thursday afternoon, disclosed that the attackers, numbering about 20, got to the area on foot around 1 am and went into some houses opposite the Government Secondary School in the area where they abducted their victims.
A security source, who spoke to our reporter, said the kidnappers fled into nearby Shenagu forest, where they are suspected to have their camp, around 4 am along with their victims.
Also, the councillor representing Tungan-Maje ward in the area, Salihu Adamu, confirmed the incident, saying he was terrified by the sporadic gunshots fired by the kidnappers.
He said five among the kidnapped victims were rescued through the combined efforts of the police and vigilante members in the area and appealed to the police to intensify efforts in ensuring that the remaining five victims were also rescued.
Zuba Divisional Police Officer CSP Yahuza Muhammad said five of the victims, comprising three children, a pregnant woman and an elderly man were rescued unharmed.
He said the gunmen who were moving by foot, fled into the forest on noticing that security men were trailing them.
He added that two of the victims were taken to hospital due to the trauma, and that effort to rescue the others was ongoing.
Tungan-Maje, situated between Zuba and Giri, is host to military facilities, one of which was recently named as Muhammadu Buhari Cantonment.
The incident came less than a week after some forests in the FCT were discovered to be used by terrorist groups’ hideout.
The spokesman of the FCT police command, DSP Anjuguri Manzah, also confirmed that five of those kidnapped had been rescued.
He said the police responded to a distress call at about 1:30 am and a joint team of police operatives from the command’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Rapid Response Squad and Zuba police division acted promptly to rescue the five people.
He said a fierce gun battle ensued with the heavily armed hoodlums before the police team succeeded in rescuing five of those kidnapped.
He said effort was on to rescue the remaining five victims.
“The command is still reassuring members of the public on its commitment to deploying proactive crime-fighting measures to ensure the security of lives and property in the FCT,” he said.