SIM-NIN linkage ‘not working’, police can’t track gunmen — Kidnap victims lament
Kidnap victims explained how bandits have been making a mess of the Federal Government’s directives on registration of telephone subscribers and the linkage of SIM with the National Identification Number.
According to PUNCH, residents of Katsina, Zamfara and Kaduna states, who recounted their experiences in kidnappers’ dens lamented that they made the bandits’ telephone numbers available to security agents but nothing was done to apprehend the hoodlums.
Recall that in 2015, the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, directed all telecommunications firms to deactivate unregistered or partly registered SIMs.
The regulation, according to government, is aimed at ensuring that all subscribers are traceable for security reasons.
To further strengthen security in the country, the NCC last year directed the linkage of SIMs with the NIN.
But according to a PUNCH report, kidnap victims said with the way bandits were operating, the two regulations were of no use.
A kidnap victim, Mallam Yusha,u Jangeme from Zamfara State said security agents in his village, Jangeme, did nothing to trace the telephone calls of the bandits who kidnapped him.
Jangeme said bandits a few months ago kidnapped seven people in his village and he was contacted to bring ransom before they could be freed.
According to him, when he got to the forest to give kidnappers N1.4m out of N3m they demanded, they detained him, saying he must bring the remaining N1.6m.
He stated, “As soon as I got there, they received the money and refused to allow me to return home, saying that the remaining balance of N1.6m must to be paid otherwise, they would not release me and the other seven people.”
The victim stressed that the security agents didn’t render any assistance in tracing the telephone calls of the bandits despite the fact that operatives in his village (Jangeme) were aware of the situation.
He stated, “The security agents posted to my village (Jangeme) knew what was happening, but they didn’t make any attempt to use the telephone number sent by the bandits who kidnapped us.”
I gave bandits’ phone number to police when they demanded N50m – Father of Zamfara seven kidnapped children
Another person, Alhaji Sani Gyare, whose seven children were kidnapped some months ago, said “My seven children were kidnapped by bandits without resistance from the security agents who were alerted on what was happening in Kadauri village.
“When the bandits entered our village, we quickly informed the police but they didn’t report to the scene until after three hours when the bandits had left.”
He added that when the bandits called him and demanded N50m, he gave their phone number to the security agents, but nothing was done.
“The bandits called me and asked me to pay N50m so that they could release my children and I told them that I didn’t have such a huge amount”.
“I gave their phone number to the police so that they could trace the abductors but unfortunately, nothing happened”.
Another victim, Aminu Sarki said he spent 23 days in bandits’ den, adding that he did not get any assistance from the security agents who were aware of his abduction.
He stated, “There was no any effort by the security agents to rescue me throughout the 23 days I stayed in bandits den.”
He however explained that he was lucky to have escaped when the bandits were asleep.
In Katsina State, a victim, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said when he was kidnapped, the bandits seized his younger brother’s phone.
According to him, it was the telephone they used in contacting his wife and negotiating a ransom of N7m.
He said the police were informed, but they did nothing.
SIM registration not helpful in preventing bandits, kidnappers –SOKAPU
In Southern Kaduna, which has suffered incessant attacks by bandits, residents said giving kidnappers’ phone numbers to the police had not been helpful.
The Southern Kaduna Peoples Union said the SIM registration spearheaded by the Federal Government had not assisted in curtailing insecurity in the country.
The SOKAPU’ Spokesperson, Luka Binniyat, told one of our correspondents in a chat on Monday that with or without the SIM registration, the insecurity was getting worse.
Binniyat said, “For all we know, the police usually contact members of the families of kidnap victims that are in touch with the criminals.
“The SIM registration does not seem to add any improvement to the security problem at all. As a matter of fact, it is getting worse.
“We not aware that security agencies have tracked and arrested the bandits.”
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