Onimisi Alao, Yola
The Directorate of State Service (DSS) has arraigned nine persons charged with various acts of kidnapping in Adamawa State.
According to the six-count charge read to the accused at High Court 1 in the state capital, Yola on Monday, the nine persons were involved in five separate kidnap cases and a case of cattle theft.
The nine persons are: Yusuf Abubakar, Yahaya Sani, Umar Jalo, Abdullahi Ibrahim, Ishaku Umar, Muhammed Adamu, Muhammed Abdullahi, Bala Sani and Rufai Ahmadu.
Yusuf Abubakar, Rufai Ahmadu, Bala Sani, Muhammed Adamu and Abdullahi Ibrahim were charged with having kidnapped one Alhaji Waziri Ibrahim from his house at Shagari Quarters in Yola South local government area, on December 26, 2019 and collected N1, 650,000 as ransom.
Yusuf Abubakar, Rufai Ahmadu, Bala Sani and Umar Jalo were charged with kidnapping one Dr Kawiyo Abdurahman from his Lakare residence in Yola South last month, January 5, and collecting a ransom of N1,450,000.
The nine were mentioned variously in four other cases: three attempted kidnap cases and a case of theft of cows in Mayo Belwa.
While seven of the accused pleaded not guilty to all the charges against them, two pleaded guilty to most of the charges.
Rufai Ahmadu in particular caused a stir in court and created enmity between himself and his co-accused when he pleaded guilty to the five charges of kidnapping or attempted kidnapping and asked the others to do the same.
He would tell them, “You people should stop lying. We were all a part of this.”
He however pleaded not guilty to the case of stealing of cows in Mayo Belwa. “I know nothing about that,” he said.
After listening to the charges read out and taking the responses of the accused, the presiding judge of the High Court 1, Justice Nathan Musa, adjourned to February 25 for continuation of hearing, and asked that the accused be returned to detention.
The Director of DSS in Adamawa State, Bola Olori, who had earlier given a hint of the day’s arraignment, said in an informal conversation with newsmen Monday afternoon that 10 other persons would be similarly charged to court in the course of this week