Police, military rescue nine abducted herders in Anambra, recover stolen cows

Police in Anambra State, on Monday, said they have rescued nine of the 10 abducted members of the Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN).

The South-east Chairman of MACBAN, Gidado Siddiki, had raised an alarm that 10 of their members were abducted by gunmen in Obene Community, Ogbaru Local Government Area of the state on Saturday.

The gunmen, who also stole over 300 cows, had demanded N4 million ransom and a gun from the families of the victims.

But, the police spokesperson in the state, Tochukwu Ikenga, said nine of the abducted herders have been found.

Mr Ikenga disclosed this in a statement on Monday.

He said they were rescued in a joint operation with the military on Sunday.

The spokesperson said the herders were found in a “bush unharmed” and that some of the stolen cows were also “discovered” in the bush.

He did not, however, give the number of cows that have been discovered.

“On April 24, 2022, some of the victims of the abduction were seen in the bush unharmed while one of the abductees is still missing,” he said.

Mr Ikenga, a deputy superintendent of police, said efforts were being intensified to locate the missing herder and some of the cows that are yet to be found.

Attacks by armed men have increased in the South-east in recent times. The attacks often target security agencies and government facilities. The attack on the cattle breeders appears to be a novelty.

The Nigerian government has accused the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) of being responsible for the deadly attacks in the South-east. But the group has repeatedly denied their involvement in the attacks.

The separatist group is leading the agitation for an independent state of Biafra to be carved out from the South-east and some parts of South-south Nigeria.

The leader of the group, Nnamdi Kanu, is currently being detained in Abuja where he is facing trial for alleged treason.

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