Thursday, July 23, 2009

512 kidnappings in Nigeria this year

Minister of Police Affairs Ibrahim Yakubu Lame disclosed that 512 people were kidnapped this year alone and 30 out of the 512 died in the hands of their kidnappers. In 2008, 353 people were kidnapped and only 2 captives lost their lives.

Kidnappings in Nigeria began rising in 2006 when militants in the Niger Delta started kidnapping expatriates for ransom.

This sharp increase in Kidnappings in Nigeria is said to have been brought by politicians using militants for their own political agendas according to the minister:

"The question of militants started as a political move. Politicians use them. Gradually it degenerated from mere agitation to militancy. It became very disheartening to government that money has now become the central point for criminal situation in the Niger Delta."

"We have realized that most of the cases of kidnapping are internally generated especially within the family. The action which started from kidnapping of oil expatriates, moved to men of God and children. The police is very concerned about the life of those kidnapped."

The minister added a bill providing stiffer punishment for kidnappers has been submitted to the National Assembly. N7.45 billion ($49.33 million) has also been budgeted this year to provide special security for Lagos, Port Harcourt, Onitsha, Kano, Abuja, Maidugri and Kaduna. Plans are on the way to build six forensic laboratories in each of the six geo-political zones and also provide mobile forensic labs.


Related stories: Kidnapping culture in Nigeria on the rise

Canadian Kidnapped in Kaduna,Nigeria

Nigerian priest kidnaps woman and demands N4million ransom

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