How gunmen abducted driver, 3 engineers executing project for Ebonyi Gov’t
Unknown gunmen have abducted three engineers of Nelan Consultants engaged by the Ebonyi State Government in the construction of the Abakaliki Ring-Road Project, reports said.
The victims were abducted alongside their driver on November 3, 2021, at the Effium, Ohaukwu Local Government Area axis of the ring road.
The Ebonyi State Government, funded by African Development Bank had recently embarked on the $150 million ring road construction project in the state capital city.
The road spans 198km and cuts across and encircles eight Local Government Areas (Abakaliki, Izzi, Ebonyi, Ohaukwu, Ezza North, Ezza South, Ishielu & Ikwo LGAs) of Ebonyi State, thus covering approximately 62% of the total LGAs in the state.
It was alleged that the engineers who are not indigenes of the state were abducted by gunmen at Onu-Nwenewo, an Ezza village of Effium Community of Ebonyi Local Government Area of the state.
The victims were said to be taking measurements of the roads between Effium and Nworie village in preparation for the commencement of the Ring-Road Project recently awarded by the State Government.
In a message circulating on the social media sighted by the correspondent, a reward awaits anyone with information about the contractors to enable them to reunite with their families.
A source in the community who preferred to be anonymous alleged that the vehicle carrying the engineers was set ablaze by the hoodlums at Igbudoke.
“After their kidnap, the family members of the victims were contacted and they sent 500 thousand nairas to the abductors. But they subsequently refused to release them, they rather switched off the victims’ phones which is an indication that they must have been killed. The transaction was done through a POS at Onunwanewo where war IDPs are camping”. The source alleged.
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Loveth Odah, police public relations officers in the state said the command through the anti-kidnapping unit is on a manhunt to rescue the victims and arrest the suspects.
The PPRO said, “The command is aware that the engineers working on the ring road who went to Ezza-Effium were abducted, we don’t want to call it to kidnap because the abductors did not request a ransom.
“The police are on a serious investigation. They are on the trail all this while though not happy with the engineers who have gone to that area without informing the police in a town neither did, they inform the police on peace mission there knowing fully well that Effium is a war zone but the anti-kidnapping is seriously on it.
“The commissioner of police has directed that he should do everything within the ambit of the law to ensure that they are rescued and the perpetrators arrested.”