Security agencies have launched a manhunt for the gunmen who killed two officers and abducted one from the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) in Afaka, Kaduna State, yesterday morning.
A source said the gunmen stormed the school in large numbers, kidnapped Major Christopher Datong, and killed a lieutenant commander, simply identified as Wulah, and a flight lieutenant, C.M. Okoronkwo.
The source, who pleaded not to be named because he was not authorised to speak, said a second lieutenant, simply identified as Onah, sustained a gunshot injury.
The officers were said to have been killed while foiling the gunmen’s attempt to gain access to the hostels.
Unconfirmed reports said the gunmen have demanded N200 million ransom.
NDA is a military university that trains officer cadets for commissioning into one of the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force.
It is located on Kaduna-Lagos highway and about 10 kilometres from the city centre.
The institution’s spokesman, Major Bashir Jajira, said in a statement that efforts were on to rescue the abducted officer. He did not confirm the ransom demand.
The statement reads:
“The security architecture of the Nigerian Defence Academy was compromised early this morning (yesterday) by unknown gunmen who gained access into the residential area within the Academy in Afaka.
“During the unfortunate incident, we lost two personnel and one was abducted.
“The Academy, in collaboration with the 1 Division Nigerian Army and Air Training Command, as well as other security agencies in Kaduna State, has since commenced pursuit of the unknown gunmen within the general area to track them and rescue the abducted personnel.
“The NDA community and cadets are safe. We assure the general public that these unknown gunmen would soon be apprehended and the abducted personnel rescued.”
The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) added that troops were on the trail of the gunmen.
Director of Defence Information, Major General Benjamin Sawyer, said the gunmen “sneaked in after breaching the perimeter fence”, adding that they “went straight to the officer’s living quarters and started shooting sporadically”.
“Unfortunately, two brave and gallant officers paid the supreme price while one other officer was abducted by the bandits during the process.
“All efforts have been intensified by troops who are currently combing the entire locations in search and rescue mission for the adducted officers.
“The Commandant NDA, as well as the HQ 1Div with the support of NAF, are presently in a coordinated joint operation to search and rescue the abducted officer and arrest the perpetrators.”