ISWAP Abducts 4 Truck Drivers, Demands Ransom In Northeast Nigeria 


Insecurity in Nigeria’s Northeast region continues to worsen as reports emerge of yet another kidnapping by suspected members of the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP).


On Saturday, May 27, four firewood truck drivers were abducted near Ngwom village in Mafa local government. Mafa is about 50 km east of Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state.


The drivers reportedly conveyed laborers, mostly wood fellers and loaders, to the bush when armed terrorists intercepted them.


The terrorists approached the drivers under the guise of needing their services to convey their members to a nearby village. However, the drivers and their passengers were soon taken hostage by the terrorists.


“When we tried to plead with them for mercy, one of them said we should leave immediately,” said one of the laborers, identified only as Abba.


“We were lucky because they have reviewed their policy of targeting poor laborers for kidnapping.”


However, the drivers did not return, and later two of the gunmen appeared and informed the laborers that the four drivers had been kidnapped and wouldn’t be released until each of them paid a ransom of N250,000 (about $500).


The source said the kidnapped drivers were Rawana, Isa, Ba’ana, and Bashir.


This latest incident highlights the growing threat of kidnappings by terrorist groups in the region, which has become a significant concern for the government and citizens.


ISWAP has recently turned to kidnappings of vulnerable villagers, mostly poor IDPs, for petty ransom. This enterprise runs daily and generates revenue for the terrorists.


“Families of the victims are hesitant to report to the police because they often resort to secret crowdfunding to raise the necessary ransom money. The terrorists have threatened to carry out violence if the relatives fail to deliver the money on time,” a local security source, Babangida Musa, said.

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