AFRICA

Burkina Faso

18 May On the website of al Akhbar, a Mauritanian news portal that has previously carried jihadist messages, Abu Walid al Sahraoui, leader of the extremist group, al Mourabitoun, announced that the group were holding the Romanian security guard who had been kidnapped on 4 April 2015 near a manganese mine. The statement said: “The Romanian government will be fully responsible for the fate of its hostage if it delays in seizing the opportunity offered to it to release its citizen”. Al Mourabitoun was once part of al Qaeda’s global network but pledged allegiance to the Islamic State five days before the announcement raising fears that the Romanian hostage could face the same fate as six Western hostages who were decapitated by the Islamic State or its official branches.

Libya

26 May Islamic State militants kidnapped a 66 year old North Korean doctor and his wife in al Noufleya, eastern Sirte, while they were being driven back to the Jalu Hospital in Tripoli where he worked. He is thought to have been working there for several years. The driver was also kidnapped but later released.

31 May Yousef al Shoumani, an administrative manager in Libya’s Mellitah oil and gas consortium owned by state oil firm NOC and Italian company ENI, was kidnapped by unknown gunmen. Mellitah operates a complex in the west of the country as well as the Wafa and El Feel oilfields. Officials from the consortium could not be reached for comment.

Mozambique

5 May Data in part of a document submitted by the Attorney General of the Republic to Parliament, showed that 42 kidnappings were registered in 2014, two less than in 2013. The largest number was reported in the province and city of Maputo and there were six cases in Beira, five in Nampula and three in Inhambane. Maputo has been affected by a wave of organised and violent crime this year and four Portuguese citizens were kidnapped during the first quarter.

8 May The Police of the Republic of Mozambique (PRM) are said to have confirmed the kidnapping of an unnamed woman at around 8:00am as she dropped her daughter at school in the Coop neighbourhood of Maputo. Eyewitnesses reported that the woman was approached by four armed men, two of whom fired into the air dispersing bystanders who were trying to assist the woman. The victim was dragged violently away. This is the fifth kidnapping in Maputo in 2015. Two victims are said to still be held by their kidnappers.

17 May The Police of the Republic of Mozambique (PRM) arrested three men accused of being involved in four out of five kidnapping for ransom incidents that have occurred in Maputo Province. The three have allegedly confesses to their participation in the incidents. According to the arrested suspects, each kidnapping would take approximately two months to plan.

17 May According to a report in O Pais newspaper, a Portuguese woman who was kidnapped in April was released after her family paid a ransom of MT1 million (USD28,500).

22 May There were reports that an unnamed schoolgirl aged 8 years had been kidnapped in Matola at around 6:00am as she was going to school. It was alleged that the kidnappers had contacted her family with a ransom demand.

22 May According to an unconfirmed report, a female storeowner had been kidnapped in the Magoanine neighbourhood. In a further unconfirmed report, a local bar owner was said to have been kidnapped in the Chamanculo neighbourhood between 18 and 21 May.

25 May Two alleged kidnappers were arrested by police in Maputo. The two men denied any involvement in kidnapping.

Nigeria

1 May Ayuba Ibeto, younger brother of Ahmed Musa Ibeto, deputy governor of Niger State, was kidnapped from the family home in Ibeto town at around 10:00pm. Six armed men arrived at the house in two vehicles and began shooting in the air to scare away the neighbours. They took the victim away in their vehicles. The following morning the kidnappers contacted the victim’s mother on her cell phone and told her son was safe and all they needed was money. They did not specify the ransom amount.

2 May The defence headquarters said that troops had freed another 234 women and children from Boko Haram’s stronghold in the Sambisa forest. About 500 women and children had already been rescued in the past few days.

4 May Mrs. Adebisi Orekoya said that the family had paid N2.5 million (USD12,600) as a ransom for the release of their three young children who had been kidnapped on 8 April in Lagos State. This contradicted reports that the family had paid N13 million (USD65,300). She explained that the kidnappers had initially demanded N15 million (USD75,400) and had reduced the demand to N13 million when she said the family could not afford the original ransom demand. The kidnappers then gave her the option of paying for only one child and asked her to nominate the one she loved the most. The police advised her to keep begging while they traced the source of the calls. When the kidnappers finally agreed to the amount the family said they could afford, they sent a GTbank account number for the family to pay in N2.5 million.

5 May Rev. Father Hycinct reported that Rev. Father Innocent Umor of Ikanepo parish in Ankpa, Kogi State, was kidnapped the previous day around 2:00am when gunmen stormed the parish and kidnapped him. They used the victim’s telephone to call the Bishop of the Diocese, Bishop Anthony Adaji, and demanded a ransom of N4 million (USD20,100). Father Umor was released two days after his kidnapping. A spokesman for the diocese said the circumstances of his release were not clear.

7 May Dr. Patrick Adegun, former Chief Medical Director of the Ekiti State Teaching Hospital, and his wife were kidnapped at around 8:00pm a few yards from their house located in Oke Ila, Ado Ekiti Capital City. The couple were returning home in their car when they found their gate blocked by another car. When they remonstrated with the driver of the blocking car, they were manhandled into the car and driven away. According to a source at the hospital, as at 9 May, the family has not yet received a call from the kidnappers. On 10 May, the Ekiti Chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association declared an indefinite strike to protest the kidnapping and that of Mrs. Margaret Aladeneka, a nurse with the Federal Teaching Hospital.

11 May Dr. Femi Omisore, a lecturer at the Department of Environmental Design Management, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, was kidnapped by unknown gunmen at Ado Ekiti while on his way to Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti State, to attend a funeral. The kidnappers followed the victim’s car before stopping it. They shot the driver as he tried to escape and forced the victim into their vehicle before driving away. The kidnappers later demanded N70 million (USD352,000) for the release of Dr. Omisore.

12 May Dr. John Akinbote, Chairman of the Ekiti State Nigerian Medical Association, told a journalist that seven doctors had received text messages from kidnappers alerting them that they could be kidnapped at any time. At the same time, members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) called for the overhaul of the security chiefs in Ekiti State for their “poor professional handling” of the kidnapping of Dr. Femi Omisore.

14 May Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi, Commissioner of Police, Kogi State, addressed journalists while parading three alleged kidnappers. He explained that the three men were alleged to have kidnapped a Chinese national working in the Ceramic industry in Ajaokuta Local Council on 27 April and collected N5 million (USD25,125) in ransom from the company. He added that the gang leader, named Ada, was still at large and the police were working to arrest him. After collecting the N5 million, Ada only gave N3.5 million to the other members of the gang to share.

16 May Alhaji Adamu Usman, the member representing Toungo Constituency in the Adamawa State House of Assembly, was kidnapped when gunmen stormed his house at Kofare Ward of Yola at around midnight the previous night. The victim had won re-election to the Assembly in the recent general election after defecting from PDP to APC. His kidnapping is the third kidnapping in Adamawa State in the last six months.

16 May Unidentified gunmen stopped a vehicle carrying three women, their husbands and an unknown number of children, while it was travelling along the Igbole-Igbosin road, Ekiti State. The party were travelling to Ibadan, Oyo State, to attend a wedding. The kidnappers stole telephones and other valuables from their victims and then released the husbands and children before driving away with the three women.

20 May Alhaji Jimoh Ibrahim, the immediate past chairman of the Ondo State Muslim Welfare Board, was kidnapped by gunmen from close to his printing shop at Eru Oba Street, Akure, Ondo State. The victim was forced into a car and driven away. A source in the family confirmed to journalists that the kidnappers had contacted the family and demanded a ransom of N15 million (USD75,400).

20 May Mama Mwuese, the mother of the House of Representative-elect for Buruku Federal Constituency in Benue State, was kidnapped from her home when gunmen stormed the compound overpowering bodyguards. The kidnappers exchange gunshots with the police as they escaped with their victim.

21 May The family of an Anglican Church cleric, Reverend Louis Nebo (57), said that policemen attached to the Anti-Kidnapping Squad of the Enugu State Police Command demanded N65,000 (USD327) to rescue the cleric from the kidnappers’ den. It is understood that N15,000 (USD75) had been paid to the policemen before the family received a call from the kidnappers demanding a ransom of N10 million (USD50,250). The victim was reported to have been returning from a meeting at around 5:30am when eight masked gunmen kidnapped him near Umumba Ndi Uno in Ezeagu Local Government Area, Enugu State on 16 May. The victim’s wife and a member of the church were in the car. They were released while the gunmen took the victim into the bush. The victim’s son said there had been no progress towards the release of his father.

21 May An unidentified woman was kidnapped as she drove her children to school in Aba, Abia State. Eyewitnesses said that the kidnappers used their vehicle to block the woman’s car as she approached Junction 8, Ogbor Hill, and ordered her children out of the car. A neighbour said that gunmen had tried unsuccessfully to kidnap the woman’s husband two weeks earlier. At the time of the report, it was not known if the kidnappers had contacted the victim’s family.

21 May According to official sources, six armed men kidnapped Patience Egbeni and Kate Eni, maternal cousins of the outgoing President, Goodluck Jonathan, in Akipelai, Bayelsa State, a remote area, on 19 May. The kidnappers were dressed in military uniform and forced the two women into a speedboat.

22 May Police in Ogun State arrested a teenager and a minor for allegedly kidnapping a nine month old baby in Ijebu Ode. The mother of the baby noticed that the suspects had taken away the baby and alerted the police. The suspects contacted the mother of the baby and demanded a ransom of N2 million (USD10,000). The police arrested the two suspects and freed the baby.

23 May Niger State Police Command reported that they had recovered N42.244 million (USD212,280) in Kontagora area of the state from some fleeing suspected kidnappers. The Police Public Relations Officer told journalists that the money was believed to have been collected from families of kidnapping victims in Kebbi, Zamfara and Sokoto States and the kidnappers were fleeing on motorcycles when they dropped the money.

23 May Ten kidnapping for ransom victims, including an 11 year old boy, were released by their kidnappers in Ekiti State. Those released include Dr. Folasade Alade, Dr. Femi Omisoore, Dr. Kikielomo Adegun, Margaret Aladeneka, a nurse, and Pastor Tokunbo Olofin. The victims were kidnapped from different locations in Ekiti State. Mrs. Nike Aina, a family member of one of the victims, told a news agency that the victims were released after the families had paid undisclosed ransoms.

25 May Samuel Obayomi, a Kogi High Court Judge, was kidnapped from in front of the Executive Guest Villa at Okene GRA by three heavily armed gunmen as he was being driven to work at around 8:45am. The Judge’s orderly, Mr. Musa, was shot dead but the driver was allowed to go free.

27 May The Rivers State Police Command revealed that two suspected kidnappers have confessed they demanded one AK-47 and 12 general purpose machine guns as release for Mrs. Chinyere Olumma who was rescued from her kidnappers on 22 May. The suspects had given the family the option of paying a N50 million (USD251,250) ransom or providing the weapons. The family had paid N1 million (USD5,000) for Mrs. Olumma’s “upkeep”. The police tracked the gang after they collected the “upkeep” money and caught them at Abua.

31 May An eyewitness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told journalists that five gunmen had kidnapped the Commissioner for Land, Steven Mayaki, at his farm in Osara village, Kogi State. According to the eyewitness, the gunmen arrived at the victim’s farm in a Jeep, forced him into the vehicle and drove away.

Somalia

13 May Iranian state television reported that militants belonging to the al Qaeda linked militant organisation, al Shabaab, had kidnapped 14 crew members of an Iranian fishing boat that was washed ashore in Somalia after suffering a technical fault. Two residents of El-Dher town in the coastal region confirmed the report when speaking to Associated Press by telephone.

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