By Nicholas Kalu, Abuja
Several persons were abducted in Tunga Maje community located on the border of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, close to Niger State on Thursday morning in an attack by unknown gunmen.
Though residents said the number of people abducted were more than 20, the FCT police debunked this saying 10 persons were abducted and five had been rescued.
This incident is coming just days after tension was heightened in the city over a leaked memo from the Customs suggested that Boko Haram was setting up camps in the FCT and planning to carry out attacks.
Residents of the community said the gunmen stormed the community between 12am and 2am, shooting sporadically for about an hour before abducting the people.
It could not be ascertained immediately if the kidnappings were random or targeted.
It was gathered that the local vigilante was overwhelmed by the gunmen who were said to have been carrying sophisticated weapons.
According to a statement by the FCT Police spokesman, DSP Anjuguri Manzah, the police responded swiftly after receiving the distress call on the incident and engaged the gunmen in a gun battle, after which five of those abducted, were rescued.
Manzah said efforts were still in to rescue the remaining five.
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The statement did not indicate if there were any casualties from the gun battle.
“The FCT Police Command wishes to assure the public that protection of lives and property remains the core of its policing mandate and it will continue to inject fresh strategies that will place the security of the Federal Capital Territory at its optimum.
“The Command wishes to inform the public that when it received a distress call on Kidnap of some persons on 10th September, 2020 at about 0130hrs in Tungan Maje, a village bordering FCT and Niger state, a joint team of Police operatives from the Command Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Rapid Response Squad and Zuba Police Division responded swiftly to the occasion.
“During a fierce gun confrontation with the heavily armed hoodlums, the Police team successfully rescued five of the kidnapped victims.
“Meanwhile, concerted effort has been deployed to rescue the remaining five victims that are still with the hoodlums who escaped into Niger state through a nearby forest that is surrounded by rocky terrain.
“The Command reassures members of the Public with its commitment to deploy proactive crime-fighting measures to ensure the security of lives and property in FCT,” the statement read.