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By Oluwafemi Ogunjobi

Let's face it: Up until lately, kidnap cases don't get much attention as other crimes in Nigeria. It is a sad reality. Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike alias Evans, the 'billionaire kidnap kingpin' was arrested after years of terror and evasion from the security personnel. The gallant championship of Nigerian Police spurred a noise of cymbals in the victors' coast which was understandably necessary, at least he had fooled enough - with his magical escapes - and a moment to flaunt power will not be in the wrong for the former. But this piece is not about Evans. It is about the innocent students who had seen the light of the day, and prepared for the day's study but never knew they'd end up in a den of kidnappers.


34 days ago today, six students of Lagos State Model College at the Igbonla area of Epe were at around 5a.m. whisked away by a kidnap gang – who penetrated the school through a hole dug in the fence. The abduction of the six students made it the second case in seven months. Four students and two staff of the school were abducted in October last year.

This time, the students were abducted after the kidnappers had earlier written to the school, informing it of an imminent visit, and they made their way out through the creek behind the school.

The parents of the children must have been through the worse time of their lives. Such feeling of not knowing the condition of your child – whether hale, hearty, sick, or even dead – in an abductors' den, is worrying. What could they be going through? How traumatic could this have been for mothers? Trauma is a signal for threatened lives. Mortality will increase.

Not many parents could stand for hours without seeing their child return from school, let alone for weeks, and more than a month already.

As days go by, no one seems to be talking about the ill-fate of these students anymore. The media isn't giving it much attention as it should. Maybe because they are not the children, wife, of politicians or top government officials? The Police seems pre-occupied with the case of billionaire kidnap kingpin, Evans. Police authority said the force is even under serious pressure to release him.

The government has allegedly abandoned the parents to their plight, while the children remain in an unknown environment. This is a usual circumstance for Nigerians with a close example of the parents of Boko Haram abducted Chibok Girls. Parents pay the price of agony in silence.

The parents are helpless in this situation. Few weeks ago, the aggrieved parents besieged the governor's office, demanding the release of their children – some of whom have taken ill in captivity. They lamented that their poor state made them send their kids to government school.

The kidnappers had insisted that they want to negotiate with the government. The government said it won't. With perceived silence and inactions from the government, the parents resolved to raise funds to secure the release of their kids. But the abductors rejected the N2 million ransom offer by parents, and relocated the children to another camp outside Lagos and Ogun creeks.

34 days gone, our children still are not back; 25 days gone, we still are jubilating the apprehension of Evans. When will the pressing need be attended to? Evans has been arrested. Awesome. What about the kidnapped Epe students?

There are indications, however, that the abductors have again threatened to relocate the victims following a close call at their camp by security agents. If the move succeeds, it would be the third time the students will be moved from one camp to another since their abduction.

Nigeria Police should stop basking in the euphoria of Evans' arrest, and bring other criminal elements to book. It is their duty to ensure every single life is safe.

Nigerian Police needs to reinforce. We are still a step behind a success story. Nigeria is still not a safe home. Maybe, breeding criminals are just not glaring for now. They are in shadows.

Heart-felt sympathy to the parents of these kids. It must have been 'hell' for them all this while. Pray they unite with their wards soon.


Yes, enough of the film shows on Evans. They Police have lot of their table and should go back to work swiftly.

Evans, is one out of many kidnappers out there.