NAIJ.com gathered that a mallam who sells fruits was caught with a toddler he had earlier kidnapped, somewhere in Mile 12, Lagos state.
According to reports, the mallam identified as Umar, abducted a 1-year-old child from Ayodele Awodeyi street, in Mile 12, Lagos, while pretending to play with him.
The little boy identified as Isiaq Ismail, was said to be playing with other children in front of his parent's house before Umar picked him up.
Isiaq's mother had come out in search of her son after the other children ran in to inform her that Umar was with him. She was said to have raised an alarm when she saw him running away with her son stuffed inside a sack.
Isiaq's father identified as Abdulrahman Ismail, told PUNCH Metro that he was woken up from his sleep by the noise the neighbours were making while going in pursuit of Umar. He said:
“On getting outside, I saw my wife in a crowd with a man (Umar) who was being beaten. She told me the man was taking away Isiaq in a sack and she called for help. The man didn’t tell us why he abducted my son. We invited the Mile 12 Market security men to rescue him from the mob.”
Umar was saved from an imminent jungle justice by some soldiers and the Chief Security Officer (CSO) of the Mile 12 market, Imrana Ibrahim.
Confirming the incident, Imrana said:
“According to the information I gathered, the boy was playing outside with other children. The suspect approached them and held the boy in the hand. As other children ran inside, the mother of the boy came out to look for her son.
She found the child in the sack carried by the suspect. Security men rushed to the scene upon a distress call and met a mob about to lynch the man. They intervened to rescue him, but the mob resisted. I had to seek the assistance of soldiers to rescue him.
We took him to a police post around us and he was later transferred to the Ketu Police Station. Some people said he sold cucumbers.”
A security man identified as Sami Iliya, said Umar had earlier been caught trying to steal goods from a parked truck.
A resident of the area who gave his name as Abdullahi Kwakwa, said child kidnapping was on the rise in the area. He said:
“Hardly a month goes by when a case of missing child will not be recorded around here. As I speak, we have been looking for a child since last year. That was why people were angry when they caught the man.”
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Confirming the incident, Lagos state police Public Relations Officer, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole, said:
“The matter is still under investigation and the suspect will be transferred to the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the command for a comprehensive investigation.”
Meanwhile, see this video of farmers protesting against the kidnap of one of their members: