Sarkin Suleiman Ibrahim Ahijo, the Sarkin Tilijo Michika in Adamawa State, expressed gratitude for his safe return after a harrowing kidnapping experience during a security dialogue session focused on community-based solutions to address insecurity. Reflecting on the ordeal, the traditional ruler acknowledged divine intervention and his ability to evade danger by disguising himself while traveling from the North East to Abuja.
Detailing the alarming circumstances, Sarkin Sulaiman disclosed that he spent two days in captivity, emphasizing the dehumanizing practice of kidnappers categorizing victims based on appearance, clothing, and possessions. He recounted being assigned the alias “Baba Painter” by his captors, who initially demanded a ransom of N20 million.
Quick thinking and resourcefulness played a pivotal role as the ruler successfully negotiated, reducing the demand to N10 million and eventually securing his release after an additional payment of N200,000.
In a broader context, Sarkin Sulaiman highlighted the pervasive security challenges in the country, citing instances where criminal elements dictate access to farmlands and even interfere with cultural celebrations. The sobering account shed light on the need for comprehensive community-driven approaches to curb the rising wave of insecurity affecting various regions, emphasizing the importance of both individual resilience and collaborative efforts.