Shattered by letter from robbers

A rural community, which barely connects with other parts of Abuja due to poor access roads and absence of other basic social amenities has been contending with a lot of challenges. Recently, it got another cause for concern, as it received a letter from men of the underworld alerting the poor folks of an imminent raid by a gang of robbers. CALEB ONWE reports



Residents of Angwa Siyawa, a sub-community in Kabusa, one of the satellite towns in Abuja Municipal Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) , are not only troubled by the persistent economic downturn in the country, their socio-economic woes seem to be multiplying by the day with no hope for succour.

A forthright ago, the residents of this sleepy enclave woke up in high spirit to face the challenges of the day but discovered a special notice pasted on the walls of their homes and all over the community.

They were no ordinary handbills or posters but a letter purportedly from some faceless men of the underworld alerting the poor folks of an imminent raid on the community by a gang of robbers The news of this imminent undesirable visitation has unsettled residents of the community and aggravated their woes.

Though an awkward development that ordinarily would have been dismissed with a wave of the hand, since it was suspected to be the handiwork of some deviant members of the society, the fact that it has some elements of threat to life and possible loss of their hard earned money and property has compelled the people to shout for help.

Inside Abuja visited the area and obtained a copy of the nebulous notice that has rattled the residents and made life miserable for them. The notice read:”Attention!!! We are coming to pay you and your family member a visit very soon.

If you love yourself, better arrange some reasonable amount of money and await us. “Failure to comply with us will cause you and your house a serious damage. “We heard that the security around this area is tight, but they can’t stop us from coming through. Beware.” Although scripted in poor grammar, it has sent fears and shock waves across the length and breadth of the community.

A middle aged woman, who resides in the community and confirmed the report, told Inside Abuja that residents have become very apprehensive because, these social deviants wrote a similar notice to an adjoining community sometime ago and eventually attacked them. Inside Abuja gathered that during that attack, a Cameroonian woman was robbed of N200,000 in the said area.

Their decision to cry out for help, Inside Abuja also learnt, stems from the fact that Angwa Siyawa had witnessed incessant armed robbery attacks within the recent times and an alert for a formal visit by the faceless group was very frightening.

Some of the residents disclosed that that some weeks before this disturbing notice surfaced, some robbers numbering about eight and armed with sophisticated weapons had stormed some part of Kabusa at about 3.00am and robbed over 10 households without any form of intervention from security operatives.

Speaking about that robbery attack, a resident, who wants to remain anonymous, said that the dare devil robbers took the area by surprise despite the presence of some local vigilante security men in the area. According to the resident, the robbers forced their way into the apartments of their victims and carted away valuables and cash. He said:“We never expected this robbery attack on such a time. It was brutal.

They were heavily armed with sophisticated guns and other dangerous weapons. “I was shivering when I heard their movement and the noise made with their instruments to break in pieces veranda and window burglaries, through which they gained entrance into the houses of their victims.

“They did that to over 10 residents and robbed them of mobile phones, electronics, jewelleries, cash and other valuable items. We have not been sleeping well after the incident happened.” During that previous attack in the neighbouring community, the police was said to have been invited to come for rescue.

“We called on the police and military to come to our rescue as Kabusa and environs are being terrorised by the men of the underworld”, he added. The residents of Angwa Siyawa also revealed that they cannot keep quiet over the message from these faceless messengers because of the several deadly attacks that have been witnessed around the community in the recent times.

Another resident, a man who also preferred to be anonymous, told Inside Abuja that there was another robbery attack a day before the notice appeared in their community.

The attack, he said, occurred in one of the suburbs called Guduwi, after these men of the underworld sent a notice of their coming to the area and actually did after few days later.

Another female resident, lamented that the people living in suburbs of Abuja were passing through hell in the hands of these men of the underworld. According to her: “There is no good access road to the area.

When you manage to get home after a stressful day, there will be no electricity supply that will help to soothe the pains of the economic stress.” She also said that heat period is another factor that has added to the hardship of the people. “We are now endangered by these armed robbers, who have made life miserable for us. They came the first time and robbed us terribly.

They used heavy objects to destroy our burglaries and came in to rob us. They asked us to surrender all our belongings and they went on to search and carry anything they saw. Last Friday’s robbery attack is the second time they have come to rob us. They were heavily armed to the teeth with vehicles they used in carrying what they robbed. “We are helpless and call on the government to save our soul.

The vigilante security outfit is not armed with guns to confront them and police does not come to our area. We are just on our own.” she said. Inside Abuja gathered that residents are taking the issue of the fresh notice served on them by the suspected robbers very seriously to avoid a recurrence of what happened to their neighbours.

After the troubling notice was pasted on the houses of residents in Angwa Siyawa, it was learnt that some men were mobilised to start keeping vigil to help the conventional vigilante groups in the area. Inside Abuja visited the Palace of the Chief of Kabusa to get reactions on what the traditional leadership of the community was doing but the chief was said to have travelled and that nobody around was competent to respond to the inquiry. Officials of the Nigeria Police station in Kabusa declined to confirm the incidents of robbery in the area and what they were doing to checkmate the robbers.

After a long wait to see the Officer in Charge of the station, our correspondent was asked to direct any such inquiry to the Police Public Relation Office at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Command ,as he remained the only one allowed by Police rules to give crime statistics of update on crime situation.

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