Nigeria: Bandits Raid Ex-Governor Yari's Hometown, Abduct in-Law

21 October 2021

"(He) has just returned from Dubai, and when the bandits came, they even asked him if he had brought anything for them from Dubai."

Bandits have attacked the hometown of a former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, Talata Mafara, and abducted his brother-in-law and a neighbour.

The incident on Monday night was the first time the headquarters of Talata Mafara local government was attacked.

There had been previous attacks in the local government area, like the abduction of over 300 students at the Government Girls Secondary School, Jangebe, but they all happened in villages.

One of Mr Yari's political associates, Bello Ruwan Bado, confirmed the abduction of Auwal Hussain, known as King.

Mr Hussain, whose sister is Mr Yari's first wife, lives in the former governor's private residence before he got married and is considered to be one of the former governor's closest persons.

The wife of Mr Hussain's neighbour, Surajo, was also kidnapped in the incident.

Another neighbour, Mustapha Lawal, said he heard gunshots and the voices of the bandits.

"We heard when the bandits came in the night. They came on motorcycles and shot in the air to scare people. It was in the night around 11:30 p.m.

"The fact that bandits could come into this area considered to be the safest in Talata Mafara, which is also the second-largest town in the state, is scary. They operated for over an hour without security personnel coming to challenge them," he said.

A friend of Mr Hussain, who craved anonymity, said they believed informants were involved.

"King has just returned from Dubai, and when the bandits came, they even asked him if he had brought anything for them from Dubai. They also didn't kidnap anyone apart from the wife of King's neighbour."

The police spokesperson in the state, Mohammed Shehu, did not respond to calls and SMS sent to him on the abduction.

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