From N300m to N900m — how kidnapping for ransom is booming in Nigeria

 From N300m to N900m — how kidnapping for ransom is booming in Nigeria

Image source: Premium Times

Kidnapping, though existent before now, is on the rise and has become the new “oil boom” for miscreants and terrorists, who demand ransoms as high as 300-900 million Naira from their victims.

Nigerians traveling on highways, between states, or even staying in their homes no longer feel safe as the rate of kidnapping skyrockets.

Gunmen reportedly abducted Janet Galadima-Gimba, a customary court judge, along with her four sons from their residence in the Mahuta area of Kaduna on the 23rd of June, 2024.

The abductors, numbering about 15, invaded the judge’s residence at night when her husband, a medical doctor, was away on duty. Tragically, Victor Gimba, the first child was killed while in captivity, as the family could not provide the 300 million ransom demanded by their abductors.

Similarly, Hajiya Hauwa’u Adamu, the mother of famous Hausa musician Dauda Adamu, popularly known as Rarara, was kidnapped, with her abductors reportedly demanding a ransom of 900 million Naira.

Recall that in March, bandits kidnapped 16 people in the Gonin Gora area of Kaduna and demanded a ransom of 40 trillion Naira, 11 Hilux vans, and 150 motorcycles.


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What Statistics Say About Kidnapping in Nigeria

New statistics show that at least 1,290 people have been kidnapped in Nigeria since the beginning of 2024. This figure comes from an analysis of reports in Nextier’s Nigeria Violent Conflict Database, published between January 1 and June 22, 2024.

The reports also revealed that about 800 people were abducted between July 2023 and December 2023 under Bola Tinubu’s administration.

Authorities’ Reaction

The Senator representing the Federal Capital Territory, Ireti Kingibe, recently lamented the high insecurity in Abuja, noting that residents are not safe., on the 30th of June, also reported that Shehu Sani, a former senator from Kaduna, said the deterioration of security in parts of Abuja is a direct result of the security situation in the states around the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). Sani, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), asserted that Abuja cannot be immune “as long as its neighbours are infected.”

Muyiwa Adejobi, the spokesperson for the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), in an earlier statement, lamented that the payment of ransoms has encouraged criminals to continue their illegal activities.

Adejobi said, “Every kidnapper demands ransom because it is a business. We don’t want people to just play to the gallery of these kidnappers who work on their psyche to make them pay. They need to talk to us (police) in confidence. I don’t want Nigerians or the relatives of victims to believe that we are incapacitated and unable to rescue any victim.”

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