Armed bandits have abducted two senior police intelligence officers who were travelling along the highway between Abuja and Kogi.
The officers were on a critical investigation assignment to Kogi when they were seized by bandits on August 23, but the police leadership hushed the crisis to avoid another public agitation over the country’s insecurity. A senior police chief said officers are now worried about the lives of their colleagues, adding that Inspector-General Usman Baba Alkali did not seem to appreciate the urgency of the matter.
“The IGP is only concerned about the matter getting to the public,” a police chief said under anonymity to avoid administrative backlash for unauthorised disclosure to reporters. “We cannot wait until something worse happens to colleagues before exposing this dangerous situation.”
The Gazette was informed by another officer familiar with the police’s management of the situation that the assailants had reached out with a demand for ransom.
“The bandits are demanding N30 million,” the officer said under assurances that their identity won’t be disclosed.
The officers, who were identified to The Gazette as police superintendent Francis Yisa and assistant superintendent John Kefas, were on a reconnaissance mission in Kogi, where violent insurgents have claimed responsibility for killings and abductions in recent weeks. At least two four bomb explosions have occurred in the state since June.
Mr Alkali declined calls to his mobile phone seeking comment Saturday afternoon. A spokesman for the police did not immediately answer calls to his line.
The development comes less than a month after 10 police officers were abducted in Kogi. They were on their way back to Nasarawa from an election assignment in Osun when the bandits struck on the highway, leaving them stranded for hours until they were rescued.