September 26, 2021

Another top politician dies in Plateau as Police kill suspected kidnappers

Engr. Sam Gyang Audu

A former Rector, Plateau State Polytechnic, Engr. Sam Gyang Audu has been reported dead.

Gyang, has been Commissioner for Information, Commissioner for Works and Transport, Commissioner of Housing, and General Manager, Jos Metropolitan Development Board (JMDB). He was also Chairman, Riyom LGA, Plateau State.

News of his death was shared by Mr. Friday Bako, the Media Aide to House of Representatives member for Barkin Ladi/Riyom constituency, Simon Mwadkon.

He died at the age of 70, shortly after statesmen and politicians known to him – late Barr. Danjuma Maina, late Hon. J.D. Haruna, late Engr. Jimmy Cheto and late AIG Dan Bature.

The cause of Engr. Audu’s death has yet to be ascertained.

He was however a respected elder and statesman, who impacted the State and fellow citizens.

He was particularly reputed for speaking out for his people who have faced sustained herdsmen attacks for years.

Audu’s death was announced shortly after the Police Intelligence Response Team on Sunday gunned down two suspected armed robbers and kidnappers in Plateau State.

The evening operation along Jos-Mangu road led by a fearless Officer, Abdulrahman Isah aka Dinyau followed a tip-off by locals, it was gathered.

A resident of Mangu Local Government, Mamot James Akims says the operation followed days of sustained terrorism by criminal gangs in the locality.

Local media reports had earlier on Sunday alleged that some suspected kidnappers were mobilizing funds to free some of their arrested colleagues.

Four suspects were arrested two weeks ago by the Plateau State Police Command after tracking a mobile phone belonging to a kidnap victim.

Other suspects who were at large, sources say were trying to bribe Police and court Officials to free the arrested.

Four years ago, some armed herders believed to be members of the same syndicate ambushed the Paramount Chief of Bokkos, Saf Ronkulere, Da Lazarus Agai. Though still unofficially announced, the Chief was said to have died from strangulation after surviving dozens of bullets fired at his car.

His driver, Police Orderly, son and two others were also killed in the attack while his wife and grand child survived with bullet wounds.

Police arrested three suspects twice with incriminating evidences, but were released by local courts.

Since then, kidnappings, armed robberies and village attacks have increased in Bokkos LGA and its surrounding LGAs including Mangu.

The present Police Commissioner in the State, Edward Egbuka and the Commander of the Special Task Force Operation Safe Haven, Major General Chukwuemeka Okonkwo are however leaving no stone unturned in dealing with the criminals.

Several successful operations have also been led by the Commander, STF Sector 4, Col. Abdullahi Abdulsalam against the criminals. The Military Officer has proved to be ruthless against all criminal gangs regardless of tribe or religion.

The Department of State Services is also active in identifying threats and alerting all relevant enforcement agencies. Recently, the DSS Command in Jos sent a letter alerting the STF about planned attacks.

Just last week, after the alert by the State DSS Command, a public alert was released by Dr. Peter Afunanya, the Public Relations Officer, Department of State Services, National Headquarters, Abuja, warning that some people were planning to invite religious violence.

The alert follows a similar warning by the Secret Service late last year about plans to attack certain Communities.