This edition of the weekly update spotlights organized crime in the Niger Delta with a focus on kidnapping for ransom in Bayelsa State. Recent data indicates an increase in incidents of kidnapping for ransom in Bayelsa State. According to data (see map below), more than 70 incidents of kidnapping were reported in the State between January 2018 and June 2021. Latest incidents show that kidnapping for ransom is increasingly becoming frequent and intense in the State. In July 2021, for example, the 86-year old mother of the Secretary to the Bayelsa State Govern-ment was reportedly abducted by kidnappers along Azikoro Road in Yenagoa, the state capital. The kidnappers demanded a ransom of 500 million naira. Separately, in July, a 34-year old banker and proprietor of a popular nightclub was reportedly abducted by kidnappers at a build-ing construction site in Yenagoa, the state capital. The kidnappers demanded a 200 million naira ransom. Recently, on September 05, 2021, the 70-year old father of a local government chairman was reportedly kidnapped by gunmen at his residence in Kpansia community, Yenagoa LGA.
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