I’m not a kidnapper; children like following me—Suspect
By Evelyn Usman
An attempt by a mother of two to kidnap a three-year-old child from a mosque, Tuesday night, in Lagos, was thwarted by the child’s cry.
The Rivers State-born suspect, Juliet Ajagun, as gathered, stood in front of a mosque on Muyi Opaleye Street, Ijegun, when the child came out of the mosque to take water from a tank to drink.
She reportedly handed a packet of biscuits to the unsuspecting child and, thereafter, held him by the hand and led out of the mosque’s premises.
However, on the way, the male child started crying, calling ‘Daddy mi, Daddy mi,’ (my daddy, my daddy), which drew the attention of a curious man, Abdulrahman Yusuf, who also went to the mosque to pray.
Yusuf told Vanguard that “on closer observation, I discovered that the crying child was my friend’s. When I asked the woman where he was taking him to, she did not answer me. Rather, she was dragging the child with me.
“At the same time, she turned her face away and was chanting an incantation. I had to raise the alarm, which attracted people, including the father of the boy, who was at that moment inside the mosque.”
The woman would have been lynched but for the intervention of some residents, who suggested that she be handed over to the Police.
The shocked father of the child, Abdulhammid Abioye, told Vanguard that his son only left him inside the mosque to drink water outside.
Expressing his gratitude to God for the botched kidnap attempt, Abioye explained: “I went in the company of my son to the mosque to pray at about 7p.m., after which I decided to wait to continue with the 8p.m. prayer, instead of going home and returning later.
“During the wait, my son said he was thirsty and I told him to go and drink water from the tap outside, which he had been doing himself, only to be alerted of a move to kidnap him.”
Amidst the beating, the suspect, as gathered, insisted that her intention was not to kidnap the child but that the child decided to follow her on his own. Asked if she knew the child or his parents, she shook her head, “no.”
The 38-year-old woman, who said she was a widow, told Vanguard: “I live at Ilemeta Agboke, in Ijegemo area, but I always come to Alhaja’s place in Ijegun to drink ogogoro.
“I love children and wherever I go, they always follow me, even if I chase them away. Yes, I bought biscuits for this particular child and he decided to follow me on his own.
“I am not a kidnapper; I have two children of ages 14 and seven, who are with my relatives in the village because my husband just died.”
Vanguard gathered that policemen from Isheri-Oshun, who went to the scene to prevent the woman from being lynched, took her away.