By Hannah Nathan, Warri
Anambra State police has refuted recent allegations made by a kidnap victim that the Umunze community in the Orumba South Local Government Area of the state serves as the kidnappers’ headquarters.
In his account of how he was abducted, the victim—who was detained for four days before being freed upon payment of a ransom—said that police agents informed his family that Umunze was the kidnappers’ headquarters and that it was a “no go area” even though his car was tracked there.
The Anambra State Police Command, however, had refuted the allegations, stating that a kidnapping gang was recently busted in the area and that the police had their divisional station in the town.
“While sympathizing with the kidnap victim who was allegedly held for four days in the area, it is important to let the public know that the claims attributed to the man are false and baseless,” DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, the command spokesperson, said in a release.
The victim who was held for four days and later released after payment of ransom had in his account of how he was kidnapped said even when his vehicle was tracked to Umunze, Police operatives told his relatives that the area was the headquarters of kidnappers and a ‘no go area’.
A press release by the spokesperson for the command, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, said: “While sympathizing with the kidnap victim who was allegedly held for four days in the area, it is important to let the public know that the claims attributed to the man are false and baseless.
“The Divisional Police Headquarters in Umunze is functioning at full capacity and the Police continue to discharge its responsibilities to the people in the area.”
The Commissioner of Police, CP Aderemi Adeoye was quoted by Ikenga as assuring the people of the state that their safety remains the most important priority of the Police Command.
“The public will recall that the Police-led Forward Operating Base in Aguata just last month smashed the insurgents’ Camp at Ogbunka near Umunze, rescuing three kidnapped victims including a Priest; recovering nine stolen Vehicles and three Pump Action Guns and arresting three of the criminals. So how can anyone claim the Police described Umunze as a no-go area?
“Police are, however, aware of insurgent activities to the south of Umunze in a neighbouring state and collaborative effort is ongoing to root them out of the place,” the release stated.