Gunmen suspected to be bandits have killed a man and abducted other eight passengers along with the driver of the SUV they were travelling in, along Funtua Road, Katsina state.
The armed bandits attacked the vehicle which left Kwanawa Motor Park in Sokoto State, heading to Kano State with nine passengers and a driver, totalling ten people on Monday.
The man that was killed by the assailants was trying to escape when they were stopped a few kilometres from Gusau, according to a source who spoke to SaharaReporters on Thursday.
The source said his friend and colleague at work, Mrs Ronke Alabi was one of the passengers kidnapped and he heard about the incident on Wednesday.
According to the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity for security reasons, the Kano-bound vehicle was attacked around 5:32 pm on Monday as the gunmen shot at it.
The source said he went to the park on Wednesday when he realised Mrs Alabi had not spoken to him since she left Sokoto on Monday.
“I had a friend in that vehicle. So, they left Sokoto here. They took off from Kwanawa Motor Park, going to Kano. That vehicle would get to Katsina before reaching Kano but unfortunately after Gusau, heading to Funtua along Funtua Road, the bandits attacked them.
“Unfortunately, one of them attempted to run away from the car and he was shot dead. He died instantly,” the source said.
He disclosed that some drivers who were able to escape the attack told him what happened.
When asked if the family members of the affected persons had been reached by the bandits, he said none of the family members of the victims had received any message from the kidnappers.
He added there were three women in the car while the rest were men.
“They were abducted. There were three women, and the rest were men, including the driver. They were 10 in the vehicle. So, since one of them was killed, nine were left. The last time I spoke to her (Mrs Alabi) was when she was leaving Sokoto on Monday, so we couldn’t reach her. I have not spoken to her since she left.
“When I observed that she had not reached her destination and was disturbed, I had to go and find out what happened. They said there was a vehicle attacked by bandits and the passengers were abducted along the road.
“There were drivers who parked on the roadside when the incident happened. Their families have not been contacted. It happened on Monday around 5:32 pm,” the source added.
According to the passenger manifest sent by the source, three names among the victims were visible which are Shehu Idris, Muhammad Magaji, and Aminu Abdulkadir.
The source added the car, riddled by bullet holes, was still parked at the scene of the attack on Funtua Road. He added some people later reported seeing a burnt Hilux van of the Nigerian Army beside the vehicle, which suggests there was probably a gun duel between the troops and bandits.
“The car the victims boarded is still at Funtua with bullet holes all over its body. This morning, I heard that an Army vehicle, Hilux was burned down very close to that vehicle. I think the army saw the car that was attacked, and they parked to verify and they were attacked also and their vehicle was burnt,” he added.