At least 25 vehicle passengers were abducted by gunmen in Nigeria’s northwestern state of Kaduna on Thursday, according to a local transport union.
The abductees were traveling along the Birnin-Gwari road in Kaduna when the gunmen intercepted and ordered them into a bush in the area, said Danladi Duniya, divisional head of the National Union of Road Transport Workers.
“Maybe 25 or more people in total were kidnapped… I really can’t say precisely. But I’m very sure they were not less than 25,” Duniya said in the local Hausa language.
The victims were occupying five vehicles on the dangerous Birnin-Gwari route, he said.
A driver of one of the vehicles escaped while the passengers were led into a bush located near Maganda and Kirkoyi villages in the Birnin-Gwari axis, said the transport union head.
Dozens of attacks have been recorded in Nigeria’s northwestern region since the beginning of the year, despite efforts to calm the situation by the government.
Earlier in May, the Nigerian military confirmed 107 passengers kidnapped on the Birnin-Gwari-Kaduna highway.
Recent activities of gunmen operating in that axis had prompted Nigeria’s army chief, Tukur Yusuf Buratai, to deploy more troops, charging them to end the killings and rampant destruction of property, including farmlands.
Concerned with the incessant kidnapping and killing, the local transport union in the area had also cautioned its members from plying the route until troops end the attacks.
File photo of arrested robbery suspects on Kaduna highway