About 20 gunmen suspected to be militants have abducted 7 persons during a raid on Kodjo Farm, located at Igbodu, Epe area of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.
Clad in military camouflage, the gunmen were said to have shot sporadically on Sunday when they invaded Kodjo Farms and whisked away five victims, including a 65-year-old man, Kakaja Joseph, a security guard.
It was gathered that the gunmen abducted two travellers during a second raid on the town that saw them blocking a road.
Apparently unsatisfied with Sunday’s attack, the gunmen were said to have stormed the area on Monday to abduct students of Molajoye Community High School on the assembly ground.
However, policemen attached to Rapid Response Squad (RRS), Area N Police Command, Navy and Army foiled the abduction.
The raid is coming less than two weeks after the gunmen abducted 13 farmers from the area, including six foreigners.
The gunmen, who were said to have arrived at the poultry at about 8am on Sunday, shooting sporadically, whisked away their victims in a waiting boat – carting away about 50 live chickens and several crates of eggs.
It was learnt that a number of persons spent the night in the bush during the raid.
A poultry worker, who craved anonymity, said “After kidnapping the poultry workers, the gunmen went to Molajoye Expressway and kidnapped two travelers. Some of the occupants of the bus sustained injuries.”
The Nation quoted the son of the guard, Isaiah Joseph, as saying that the family has been making efforts to rescue his father.
He said: “Since our father was kidnapped, we’ve been running from pillar to post to rescue him. When he left home on Saturday, we expected him back on Sunday for the church service. We waited with our mother, but he didn’t show up. We decided to go to the farm to check on him.
“We were told by one of the engineers that he had been kidnapped alongside four workers.
“We’re still waiting for him to return. But our major concern is his health. He’s old. We don’t know how they are treating him. The management has assured they would secure his release.”
However, the Lagos State Police Command has dismissed the report, saying that nobody was abducted.
The command’s spokesperson Dolapo Badmos, a Superintendent of Police (SP), said:
“The command wishes to state that this publication is not only false and misleading, but a figment of imagination of the writer. “Epe axis and Lagos State is totally safe.
“There is no invasion by militants or any other criminal elements on any part of Lagos.
“The command hereby advises anyone peddling this falsehood to desist or be made answerable to the law.
“Residents of Epe and Lagos at large should disregard this falsehood and carry on their lawful activities as the command has devised operational strategies to ensure safety of lives and property during this festive season.
“Members of the public are enjoined to report any suspicious movement to the command through its emergency numbers 767 or 112.”
The news is coming barely a day after the Lagos State House of Assembly approved death sentence for kidnappers, whose victims died, while in their custody.