The police in Enugu State, Nigeria’s South-east, have rescued seven abducted persons unhurt in a forest at Okpatu community in Udi Local Government Area of the state.
The police spokesperson in the state, Daniel Ndukwe, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday in Enugu.
According to him, police operatives in the state rescued the victims in the early hours of Tuesday.
Mr Ndukwe, a deputy superintendent of police, said the Forest Guard and Neighborhood Watch personnel assisted the police in the rescue operation.
Among those rescued were a couple who reportedly went to pray on a mountain – Mount Calvary – inside the forest at Awhum community in Udi Local Government Area before they were abducted by armed men, according to the police statement.
“They were abducted on June 19 at about 6.30 p.m while praying,” Mr Ndukwe said.
The police spokesperson said security surveillance had been put up in the area. “The Command has launched a discreet investigation to fish out the perpetrators,” he said.
Abduction for ransom is now one of the dominant crimes across various Nigerian cities.
Politicians, entrepreneurs, and just anyone with good financial worth, including school children, are easy targets.
A photojournalist, Uchenna Nwube, who works in Ebonyi Government House, was abducted early this month by suspected kidnappers on Okigwe-Aba-Enugu Expressway. He was later released, apparently after ransom payment.
In Anambra State, still within the South-east, the beheaded body of a former lawmaker was found on Tuesday after gunmen abducted him.
About a month ago, a serving lawmaker in Anambra was similarly beheaded after gunmen abducted him.
Besides abduction for ransom, states in the South-east have been grappling with deadly attacks by armed men.
The attacks, which the Nigerian government blamed on an outlawed group Indigenous People of Biafra often target police and other security agencies.