By Milcah Tanimu
Tensions are on the rise in Abuja as the Middle-Belt Youth Forum prepares for a protest this Wednesday against the escalating incidents of kidnapping plaguing the Middle-Belt region and other areas of Nigeria.
The demonstration, triggered by recent tragic events, including the heartbreaking loss of a university student, reflects growing frustration over what many perceive as a lack of decisive government action.
The planned march towards the Attorney-General’s office seeks a robust response against kidnappers and bandits, urging for their official classification as terrorists. This call resonates strongly with Nigerians profoundly affected by the persistent abductions and violence.
Nineteen residents remain in captivity, with the release of nine contingent on an exorbitant N700 million ransom. Tragically, four hostages, including a promising student, have lost their lives, reportedly due to delays in ransom payment.
The grief deepens in the region with the poignant story of Nabeeha Al-Kadriyar, a 400-level biological science student at Ahmadu Bello University, abducted along with six siblings.
Five sisters, including another accomplished student named Nadherah, are still held captive following their father’s release. The escalating ransom demands, starting at N60 million and now doubled, compound the distressing situation for the family.
The plight of Folashade Ariyo’s family mirrors this anguish. Her mother and three siblings confront an uncertain fate alongside the captives from Dutsen-Alhaji, their lives hanging in the balance. The brutal killing of 13-year-old Folashade has sparked nationwide outrage, further fueling the momentum of the upcoming protest.