Contrary to the perception that kidnapping is more prevalent in the South East and South South geo-political zones, a recent survey shows that people are more likely to be kidnapped in the South West than any other region in Nigeria.
The 2013 National Crime Victimisation and Safety Survey conducted by CLEEN Foundation with support from the United States based Macarthur Foundation shows that the South West has the highest incidents of kidnapping with 5 per cent of the respondents from the region saying they have either been kidnapped or attempts have been made to kidnap them.
The South South and the South East closely follows with a 4 per cent kidnap rate. The region with the lowest rate of kidnapping is the North Central region with 2 per cent.
Rape and Attempted Rape
With a 10 per cent incident of rape or attempted rape, the South South region is the rape capital of the country followed by the North East (6 per cent) and the South West and North West (4 per cent each). The South East is the region with the lowest propensity for rape with just 1 per cent.
The survey also shows that the national incidence of rape almost doubled from 3 per cent in 2011 to 5 per cent in 2013. Most of the respondents who claimed to have been raped said they were raped in and around their homes. Thirty-three per cent said they were raped nearest to their homes; 19 per cent were raped in their homes while 13 per cent of cases of rape occurred in schools or places of work.
The survey shows that cases of robbery rose 1 per cent from last year nationally. Kaduna recorded the highest cases of robbery with 43 per cent closely followed by Akwa-Ibom 42 per cent and Cross River 39 per cent. Jigawa and Kano States recorded the lowest cases of robbery with 5 and 3 per cents respectively.
The survey shows that more needs to be done about security in and around homes as 63 per cent of respondents said robberies occurred in homes or near to home.
South East states recorded the highest rate of physical assaults, the report showed. Enugu State had the highest cases of assault with 84 per cent, closely followed by Ebonyi (77 per cent) Rivers (58 per cent) and Anambra (50 per cent). The cases of physical assault in Abuja rose from 15 per cent last year to 24 per cent. However cases of physical assault dropped drastically in Niger State from 68 per cent in 2012 to 6 per cent this year. Also physical assault dropped from 23 per cent in 2012 to 8 per cent this year in Jigawa State.
Meantime, an Akure Magistrates’ Court recently remanded a 25-year-old man, Taiwo Ebenezer, in prison for allegedly kidnapping a 21-year-old, Olayemi Olatunji.
The Chief Magistrate, Mr Sunday Adedapo, who handed down the verdict, said Ebenezer should be kept behind bars at Olokuta Prisons in Akure pending advice from the State Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
According to reports, the court did not take the plea of the accused in spite of efforts by his counsel, Mr Ademola Abemkemo to secure bail for him.
The accused, whose address is unknown, is facing a two count charge of conspiracy and kidnapping.
The prosecutor, ASP Pelumi Adejuwon, had earlier told the court that the accused with others still at large, kidnapped Olatunji.
Adejuwon said the accused and his accomplices were armed with a gun, cutlasses and some other dangerous weapons when they committed the offences.
According to him, the accused committed the offences on May 7 between 8.00 a.m. and 6. 00 p.m. at Ayeyemi Street, Ondo.
He said the kidnap was, however, foiled when the victim raised an alarm which attracted passers-by who apprehended the accused.
The offences, Adejuwon said, contravened Section 516 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Ondo State, 2006.
The offences also violated Section 3(1) of the Special Anti-Kidnapping and Anti-Abduction Law of Ondo State, 2010.
The case was adjourned till June 22 for mention.