Suspected herdsmen have reportedly kidnapped at least seven indigenes of Eha-Amufu, in the Isi-Uzo Local Government Area of Enugu State.
Daily Report Nigeria gathered that the abducted victims had traveled home to spend the Christmas and New Year holidays in the village.
Sources say that at least five persons were kidnapped along the Eha-Amufu-Agu-Amede-Ikem road on Monday alone.
Mr Divine Nwonye, a relative of one if the kidnapped victims and a leader in Agu-Amede community in Eha-Amufu, told PUNCH that his sibling, who came the village to celebrate Christmas, was among those abducted.
According to Nwonye, no week passes without people being kidnapped the herdsmen along the Eha-Amufu-Ikem road.
He said the bandits have kidnapped at least seven persons in the last one week.
“There is no road or security in Isi-Uzo LGA and it is made worse because of bad road. I am begging the governor to look into our plight and save us from the incessant kidnapping along the Eha-Amufu-Agu-Amede-Ikem federal road.
“Within this year alone, we have recorded no fewer than 10 abductions with 23 people involved.
“Our people have paid several millions of naira in ransom to herdsmen, while about three people were killed along the road by the same bandits,” he added.
“The same bandits after releasing a Catholic priest in one of the parishes in Eha-Amufu, yesterday (Monday) kidnapped about five people just after the Federal College of Education.”
The community leader lamented that the police in the state has not helped matter as operatives have failed to show up when contacted.
“As it is now, the abductors have not contacted us. The last time they kidnapped the eight-year-old daughter of the chairman of Agu-Amede community, the Commissioner of Police, Abubakar Lawal, told us to go and pay ransom to the kidnappers.
“That has worsened our situation as police hardly come when contacted for any case of kidnapping,” he stated.
Nwonye also said he has abandoned his rice farm over fear of being abducted following the rise in kidnapping along the Eha-Amufu-Ikem road.
On his part, Raymond Ugwu, blamed the rise in kidnap cases on the inability of the state government fix the road, which was less than five kilometres.
“The kidnapping along the Eha-Amufu-Ikem road is largely because of bad road. Every time, our people are running on that road and we don’t have any option than that. On Monday, they kidnapped our people, but I don’t know exactly the number; but they are more than two.
“The report I got was that the kidnappers started their operation from 5pm and that was the time our people were returning to their villages and communities.
“Kidnappers are making the road miserable for us. Our people are no longer going to the market. They are no longer moving around safely; everybody is running helter-skelter.”
The Enugu State Police Command was yet to comment on the incident as of press time.