The Force Commander, Operation Thunder Strike, Col. Ibrahim Gambari, said troops of Operation Thunder Strike on Wednesday rescued seven kidnap victims who were on transit from Offa, Kwara State to Kaduna State on September 8.
He disclosed this in Rijana village along the Kaduna-Abuja highway in Kachia Local Government Area of the state.
“We recovered two AK47, 130 rounds of ammunition, five magazines, two mobile phones, N100,000 and three camouflages.
Gambari said the victims would be handed over to the Kaduna state government for further action.
According to him, Operation Thunder Strike is a Defence Headquarters led operation comprising of Army, Navy, Air Force, Police, DSS and NSCDC.
The main mission of the operation is to contain the incessant killings and kidnapping on the Abuja-Kaduna expressway.
“Since the inception of the operation we have been trying our best to put an end to ugly incidences that have been occurring on the high way.
“We have been able to nip it in the bud, such incidences and most of the cases that were recorded usually happen in the night and that is why the Kaduna state government stopped the mounting of road blocks along the road.
“Based on the report on the incident by the police on Sunday, we have been working tirelessly to ensure that the innocent civilians rejoin their families and in the process, we lost one of our sources who give us information,” he said.
The Commander urged commuters to avoid travelling at night and if they must travel at night, they should make a u-turn at the sight of any roadblock.
One of the victims, Aishat Bisola, said they were kidnapped on their way to Kaduna from Kwara State around 9.30 p.m. on Sunday.
She said they trekked for over three hours before they reached their final destination which was on top of a hill in the bush.
“They collected all our phones and money while they were negotiating ransom between N10m and N20m
“The kidnappers used to beat us every day; they even covered the face of another man and threatened to kill him if he does not bring money.
”They did not give us any food or water and we sat on the rock under rain and sun without any shelter from that Sunday until today when we were rescued,” she said.
The victims include Aisha Bisola, Ahmad Abdulrafiu, Maryam Abubakar, Suleiman Kadoka, Lawal Temitope, Bala Abdullahi, and Abdulrazak Okunola.