Residents of communities in Batsari Local Government of Katsina State said terrorists have continued to launch attacks against them and that on Sunday they abducted 19 people in Madogara village.
Most of the abductees were women, residents said.
Batsari shares boundaries with the dreaded Rugu forest where the terrorists are alleged to have several camps.
In the night attack,16 women and three men were abducted. Residents said many of the abducted where with children some of whom are as young as a year old.
“Madogara is gradually becoming a ghost town,” a health official who works in Batsari town but from the village told PREMIUM TIMES over the phone. He sought anonymity for security reasons.
“Residents with houses in the car edge of the community converge on three houses in the centre of the village every night before moving back to their respective houses in the morning.”
The source said when the terrorists struck, they went to one of the houses where the residents, mainly women, meet to spend the night. He said they were careful not to fire shots so as to avoid drawing the attention of security agents stationed in nearby communities, especially Nahuta.
“My sister and her two children were abducted in that attack,” Sadiq Hamisu said. “We had just finished the night prayer (Isha’i) so we were caught unawares by the terrorists because they hardly come that early.”
Another source, Aminu Lawal, said some of his relatives were among those abducted.
“My uncle’s wife, friend’s wife and an aunty. All of them were abducted with their children. We’ve counted nineteen people that have been taken. They (terrorists) are yet to call us for negotiation,” Mr Lawal said through phone.
He lamented that security had compounded their economic woes as most residents can’t freely access their farmlands or patronise local markets.
When contacted, the police spokesperson in Katsina State, Abubakar Sadik, asked for some time to verify the information and get back to this reporter but didn’t do so for over three hours. A message sent to him as a reminder was not responded to.
READ ALSO: Residents, police disagree over number of those abducted by terrorists in Zamfara community
Batsari is witnessing a surge in the number of attacks which local residents said are due to the rainy season.
Two weeks ago, several farmers were abducted by terrorists in the area. The farmers taken were from Nahuta, Madogara, Dan Tsuntsu, Zamfarawa and Salihar Dadare villages.
They’re yet to be released.
Terrorists operating in the North-west, especially Zamfara, Katsina and Sokoto states, are known to intensify attacks during the rainy season which residents believe is to compel local authorities into dialogue with them.
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