One week after law enforcement officers discovered the kidnappers’ den in Soka area of Ibadan, there has been a drastic reduction in the number of individuals reported missing in the city.
Prior to the discovery of the den, the state-owned TV channel, the Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State (BCOS) usually announced on a daily basis an average of 5 individuals as missing. The missing persons usually belong to various age groups including both the young and the aged.
However, since last week when the kidnap forest had come to public awareness, IBPulse.com can report that only one individual had been reported missing in the city throughout the entire week on BCOS.The person is Mr. Akeem Lawal who is missing in connection to a missing Mazda saloon car.
A cross section of the city resident that spoke to IBPulse.com said the drastic reduction in the number of missing persons go a long way to show that Soka may be the fulcrum of kidnapping activities in Ibadan.
“It was both gripping and shocking to realise the wickedness of human beings to fellow human beings,” Shola Akande, an Ibadan resident said.
“It is not surprising to note that fewer people are reported missing in the state.”
According to a security expert who spoke on condition of anonymity, the reduction in the number of cases does not entirely mean Soka is the only kidnappers’ den in Oyo state.
“It could be that the kidnappers in other dens are suspending their activities because the attention of everyone is focused on their activities. Another reason could be that more people are now aware of the activities and strategies of kidnappers in the state which means more time may be required to evolve new strategies,” he said.
He said members of the public should inform law enforcement officers of suspicious activities in their areas in order to reveal more kidnappers’ hideouts in the city.
He said: “The case of Soka should be an eye-opener that The Nigerian Police alone cannot fish out all kidnappers’ dens in Ibadan, it requires collaborative efforts involving both the security officers and law abiding citizens. When people notice suspicious moves in their vicinity, they should anonymously tip off The Nigerian Police.
“If no action is taken, they can approach media. We have so many media organizations in the city. If anyone is informed, the news will certainly get to the appropriate authorities and action will be taken no matter how long it takes.”