LESS than two weeks a clergy in Kaduna was kidnapped and later killed, the pastor in charge of Nagarta Baptist Church in the state had also been abducted on Wednesday.
The pastor identified as Elisha Numan was reportedly kidnapped in the early hours of Wednesday by heavily armed men totalling more than 20, according to Punch.
His abduction was confirmed by Chairman of the Kaduna State Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Joseph Hayab.
“One of our pastors has been kidnapped early this morning. Pastor Elisha S. Numan of Nagarta Baptist Church Ungwan Makere near Udawa. Udawa is in Chikun Local Government of Kaduna State. We are yet to hear from him,” he said.
The armed bandits, numbering about 20, reportedly invaded the clergyman’s residence on Wednesday violently, abducted him and his son, Emmanuel Elisha.
But the son who was later released was informed to provide some ransom in terms of money within five days to secure the release of his dad.
“They forced their way into our houses and vandalised properties. They carted away from some valuables including mobile phones and clothing in my mother’s box,” Elisha narrated their ordeal.
“They picked me together with my father. But after a while into the bush, I was released and they went away with my father. One of them was dressed in military camouflage,” he added.
However, the kidnappers later made contact with the family, demanding N20m ransom before the pastor could gain his freedom.
The Nigerian Army in late July discovered a group of bandits dressed in military camouflage along Abuja-Kaduna highway that mounted an illegal roadblock. Army said they would have been ordinarily perceived by “unsuspecting members of the public as military personnel”.
The clergy that was abducted today was pastoring a church at the same local government area – Chikun Local Government- the late Jeremiah Omolewa church was situated.
Omolewa, before he was killed, was the resident pastor of the Living Faith Chruch in Romi New Extension, a suburb of Kaduna.
He was shot dead on the Abuja-Kaduna road on Sunday, August 4 by the armed abductors who also kidnapped his wife. The armed men later demanded a ransom of N50 million.
After spending five days with the abductors and some money was paid, she regained her freedom. The chairman of Kaduna State Christian Association of Nigeria, Joseph Hayab, who disclosed her release to newsmen said the late pastor’s wife was picked along Kaduna-Abuja highway after some undisclosed money was paid.
There have been several reports about kidnapping, bandits killing, and attacks across Nigeria, particularly, in the Northern region.
According to Inspector General of Police Mohammed Adamu in June, Kaduna recorded the highest number of arrested kidnap suspects followed by Katsina.
Earlier in May, the IGP removed the then Kaduna State Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Abdulrahman over persistent insecurity in the state.
Though it was “part of efforts aimed at rejigging the fight against armed banditry, kidnapping and other sundry crimes across the nation, particularly in Kaduna and other contiguous States”, the police is yet to curb the crime as a pastor was reported to be kidnapped, less than two weeks after Omolewa was killed and his wife was released four days after being abducted.