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Bandits In Military Uniform Abduct over 20 Persons In Abuja

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No fewer than fifty bandits in military uniform were said to descended on Dawaki community in Abuja, and abducted over 20 people.

An eye accounts have said it was yet another daring onslaught by the attackers, who they variously described as bandits, armed robbers, terrorists, among other names.

Dawaki, a heavily populated neighbourhood, where thousands of workers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) live, is located opposite the Gwarinpa Estate, the biggest organised single settlement in Nigeria, located along the Abuja-Kubwa Expressway.

It was learnt that the invaders, armed with different categories of weapons, stormed Dawaki around 7.30 pm on Sunday, and operated up till around 8.30 pm.

The incident took place not long after kidnappers assaulted Shagari Quarters in Dei-Dei, which is about five kilometres away on the same Abuja-Kubwa Express way, and abducted the family of a Customs officer.

A resident of Dawaki, Hosea Christopher, said the bandits abducted 17 residents from three houses and on the street along Fulani Junction.

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He, however, said five of the abductees escaped while being taken towards a mountain in the outskirt of the area.

He said while the bandits were heading to a forest around the Usuma Dam, they were confronted by DSS operatives.

“They immediately opened fire on the security men but there was corresponding response. Despite the fierce offensive by the DSS operatives, the bandits were able to escape,” he said.

Other sources said more than 20 people were abducted.

Abel James, a resident who escaped abduction, said, the attackers “Wore uniforms and had face masks.”

According to him, “But I doubted their genuineness when they started shooting sporadically. As they moved towards the community, I headed into a house under construction and climbed upstairs from where I kept looking at their operation, with gunshots as they were leaving towards the hill.

“We later learnt that two of the gunmen were captured by the security men that included DSS and soldiers who joined them later around the Usuma Dam, where the fire exchange took place.”

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A community leader in the area said most of the parked vehicles around Fulani Junction were hit by bullets.

The FCT Commissioner of Police (CP), Benneth Igweh, confirmed the incident on Monday.

He said he led the rescue operation on Sunday around Ushafa- Shishipe through the Mpape hills.

He said that the operation followed a distress call after an attack on some residents of Dawaki by gunmen.

“We advanced towards the assailants, tactically ambushing them at Ushafa Hill via Bwari down to Shishipe, resulting in a fierce gun battle with the hoodlums, which forced them to flee with bullet wounds and we rescued some of the abducted victims,” he said.

Igweh added that the rescued victims were in the hospital receiving medical attention.

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