GUNMEN in the early hours of Monday reportedly abducted Muslim worshippers observing Thajud (night vigil) in a mosque in Jibia, Katsina State.
Residents put the number of those abducted at 40.
An opinion leader in the town, Mallam Gide Dahiru, however, put the figure of those abducted at 11, made up of seven men, three women and a boy.
It was learnt that the gunmen swooped on the mosque located around the New Abbatoir area in the town, a few minutes after midnight when the worshippers were in the middle of the prayers and did not fire any shot in order not to attract attention.
The gunmen reportedly marched the victims out of the mosque to their waiting motorcycles.
They (gunmen) thereafter moved in the direction of Kaoran-Namoda highway with the victims.
One of the residents who witnessed the incident from his house, said, “The bandits arrived silently few minutes after midnight. They entered the mosque and marched the victims out. During the operation, some gang members positioned themselves within the vicinity of the mosque.
“It was when they were leaving the mosque with the last victim that one of them shot into the air and they then moved along the Kaoran-Namoda highway. The gunshot attracted residents and security operatives who later arrived at the mosque.”
Dahiru, however, said security operatives, including the police and soldiers’ had taken position in the town.
Meanwhile, there was palpable fear among residents of Jibia community on Monday following the early morning bandits’ abduction of some Muslim worshippers in the town.
The Katsina Police Command said 10 persons were still unaccounted for.
A spokesman for the command, Gambo Isah, confirmed the incident.