In a disturbing incident along the Abuja-Lokoja highway, suspected kidnappers unleashed chaos as they opened fire on two commercial buses, leading to the abduction of several passengers near Ochonyi village.
The horrifying ordeal unfolded last Thursday around 7:33 pm, shortly after the buses had passed Omoko village while descending a steep section of the road. Shedrack Jonathan, one of the fortunate passengers who managed to escape the clutches of the kidnappers, provided a harrowing account of the incident. He disclosed that he had boarded one of the buses in Jabi, Abuja, en route to Enugu, only to run into the armed assailants.
According to Jonathan, the passengers suddenly found themselves in the midst of gunshots, causing one of the buses to swerve off the road and into the nearby bush. Within moments, armed individuals emerged from the thickets, brandishing firearms, and ordering passengers out of the vehicles before leading them further into the wilderness.
Jonathan recounted that he made a daring escape approximately one kilometer from the highway, finally emerging near the neighboring Aseni village. He then sought help from local vigilantes, sharing the terrifying details of the attack.
An anonymous member of the local vigilante group confirmed the abduction, stating that the gunmen had approached from the forest, disabling the buses by shooting their tires, which forced the drivers to come to a halt. By the time the vigilantes arrived at the scene, the abductors had vanished with their victims, leaving the buses abandoned by the roadside.
In the wake of the incident, the vigilant local groups are conducting extensive searches in the surrounding forest, hoping to locate the perpetrators and secure the safe release of the abducted passengers.
It is worth noting that the attack occurred in close proximity to a checkpoint, where local reports suggest that police presence is limited to daytime hours, with officers typically departing around 6 pm.
Efforts to reach the Kogi State Police Command for an official statement were unfruitful at the time of this report, as DSP Williams Ovye Ayah, the police spokesperson, had not yet issued a press release concerning the incident. The situation remains tense, and authorities are urged to take swift action to ensure the safety and security of travelers along the Abuja-Lokoja highway.