BY MONSUR OLOWOOPEJO

LAGOS residents have recently woken up to the reality of kidnapping in the metropolis. The latest in the series was the abduction of Chairman of Ejigbo Local Council Development Area, LCDA, Lagos, Kehinde Bamigbetan, by three gunmen late Monday night, April 15, 2013. He was later set free Saturday night, after six days in captivity.

Mr Kehinde Bamigbetan, Chairman, Ejigbo Local Council Development Area, LCDA, Lagos State. Photo: Kehinde Gbadamosi.

Many residents who spoke to Vanguard on the dangerous trend expressed fears and urged governments at all levels to rise to the occasion in curbing the ugly trend.

Security steps against kidnap: Residents have been warned to be vigilant and not give vital/personal information to persons unfamiliar to them. They should also avoid late outings and vary route to work or leisure locations

Residents were also warned not to discuss financial matters in the open. Always pre-plan your journeys and ensure the vehicles are in good working condition, among others.

Working condition
In an emergency, the following Lagos State Emergency Response numbers could be accessed for response: 767 or Police Control Room: 08035068243, 07035068242, 08073777717, 08073777787.

Some of the views expressed were:

Alhaji Mustapha Oshodi
For me, the Federal and State governments should work towards fixing the country, to ensure that there is even distribution of wealth, so that there can be less disparity between the rich and the needy.

The government especially the Lagos State government should create policies that would assist in tackling the increasing rate of unemployment within the state. I know that if many graduates can get employed easily, there wouldn’t be anyone left in the nefarious act.

I know that the Lagos State government through the Lagos State Security Trust Fund, LSSTF, is strengthening the security apparatus in the state but the government should intensify this to create a crime free megacity. When intensified, it would lead to increased surveillance within the state.

Mr. Nurudeen Owodunni
Lagos in my opinion is not known for the act of kidnapping with most residents being hard working citizens, so the act to me wasn’t committed by those living in the state.

I believe that they are bandits from outside the state. And they saw Lagos as an untapped area for the business of kidnapping. Examples were those arrested for the robbery at Lagos airport, 90 percent if not all were from neighbouring states.

I was so shocked when I learnt of people been kidnapped. I said the people of Lagos should not leave the fight to the government, but make it a collective fight as we don’t know who will be kidnapped next.

Mr. Ayodele Samuel
It shows that Nigerians need to worry about the increasing crime rate, there is a fundamental problem with our security agencies, I felt bad that Lagos that was a crime free state, is now known for kidnapping. We are all living in fear, the kidnappers don’t even select as they are said to kidnap for as low as N50,000 ransom, we all feel unsecure.

The government, security agencies, religious organizations and non-governmental organisations, NGOs, must rise in their various strengths to make Lagos safe for its residents.

Government should create jobs; we can’t have this high level unemployment and expect a crime free country. The only language understood by a hungry man is food.

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.