2nd August, 2010
Panic has gripped over 500,000 residents of Akwaka, in Rumuodamaya,Â the headquarters of Obio/Akpor local Government Area, suburb of Port Harcourt, of Rivers State, South-South of Nigeria, due frequent cases of kidnapping.
Last night at about 10.30 p.m.,Â a senior staff of the Directorate of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Mr.Olabode Omosegbon was kidnapped at his residence in Akwaka by four gunmen.
So far, no group has claimed responsibility for the kidnap and other kidnappings.
According to a statement from the Rivers State Police Command endorsed by the spokesperson, Rita Innoma-Abbey, police have started investigating the kidnap incident.
She, however, did not say what attempts are being made to beef up security in the area.
Also in Akwaka, Rumuodamaya, a couple who attends Redeemed Church were attacked by gunmen. The man was kidnapped while the wife was left apparently to raise money for the ransom that may be demanded.
When contacted, the Chairman of Landlords Association and former vigilante Chairman,Owhonda Tasie, for Akwaka lamented the state of insecurity in Akwaka and the lack of state government attention in the area.
According to him, â€œwe have cried to the state government and the local government for attention for attention but nothing is happening. We lack water, light and good network of roads. The only road that the state government was constructing in Akwaka was abandoned midway without any explanation.
“I expected that the state government would have availed itself of the bright weather to resume work on the road.â€
He lamented that despite that Rumuodamaya has been designated â€œSpecial Areaâ€ by the police, Akwaka does not enjoy frequent patrols.
Meanwhile,Â Innoma-Abbey has said that the police need more bullet proof vests, helicopters and other equipment to effectively policingÂ the state and flush out the criminals before and after the 2011 elections.
â€”Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt