21st September, 2010
No word has come from five members of the National Youth Service Corps, four female andÂ one male, who were kidnapped five days ago, precisely on 16 September, at about 11.30Â p.m. by unknown gun men at their lodge at Unuogha Community Secondary School in OmumaÂ Local Government Area of Rivers State.
They are still missing despite the assurances of the Rivers State Police command to fishÂ out the kidnappers and rescue the corps members.
According eyewitness account, the gunmen who arrived in a sports utility vehicle stormedÂ the Corpers’ lodge, shot their guns sporadically into the air to scare people andÂ abducted the corps members. They also made away with valuable belongings of the corpsÂ members.
Immediately after the corps members were abducted, the kidnappers put the corps membersÂ on phone to announce to their colleagues and relations that they are holding them.
At the time the operation was on, the police were contacted and immediately mobilised toÂ the scene but only succeeded in pursuing them to the boundary between Abia and RiversÂ state.
The Rivers Police image-maker, Mrs. Rita Innoma-AbbeyÂ when contacted said that theÂ Rivers Police command is working in conjunction with the Abia Police command to ensureÂ the release of the victims unharmed.
She said but so far one of the victims has been released to convey the incident of theÂ kidnap to the authorities.
The Rivers state government through, Blessing Wikina, the Acting Chief Press Secretary toÂ Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, had condemned the kidnap and called for their release.
â€œIt is very sad and unfortunate that at the time corps members are serving theirÂ fatherland they could be kidnapped. The state government calls on the kidnappers toÂ release them forthwith as they are of no pecuniary value.â€
He also called on the police to ensure they are released unharmed.â€
By Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt