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11 DAY OLD BABY KIDNAPPED

By NBF News
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Okorie with family
The menace of kidnapping in the country worsened recently as an 11-day-old baby boy, Somuadila Okorie, became a victim. He was kidnapped in Okwuagbala, Orlu Local Government Area of Imo State.

When Saturday Sun visited the community, the father of the victim, Mr. Emmanuel Okorie, a driver, disclosed that the baby was born on July 15, 2010 in his absence. He said that he never knew the baby, as it was kidnapped in the wee hours of July 25, when he was yet to return from his journey. He explained that a neighbour called him and broke the sad news.

Okorie said that the kidnappers were yet to make their demands. He said that he did not know where to look for the baby, adding that he could not remember offending anyone to the extent of snatching away the newborn baby.

He said: 'I still cannot believe that someone could do this to me. What have I done to the person? I am not a politician and at no time had I been a stumbling block to anybody. I leave that to God to judge.'

On the effort so far made to recover the baby, Okorie said that not much had been done, as those in custody of the baby were yet to contact the family. He volunteered that the only thing he had done was to report the matter at Orlu Police Station.

Giving a graphic detail of how her 11-day-old baby was kidnapped, Mrs. Okorie explained that on that fateful day, her baby had been restless due to stomach upset. As a result of the illness, she and her baby could not sleep until it was past 2am. While awake, she said that she heard strange sounds of movements around their home but as soon as she fell asleep, unknown people came in through the roof and took away the tot.

The heartbroken mother explained that when she woke up and realised what had happened, she started screaming and woke up people in the neighbourhood. But then it was already too late.

Sobbing, she said: 'How can somebody do this to us? We are poor and wretched, yet they would not leave us alone.'

Mrs. Okorie said that she suffered before she was delivered of Somadila in a local maternity home and cursed those behind her predicament.

President of Okwuagbala Town Union, Chief Olemgbe Ulanma, described the incident as terrible. He said that such crimes must not be covered up. He explained that he was in Abuja when he received a call on the matter and immediately instructed that the matter should be reported to the vigilante group and police. He explained that a similar incident happened last year, but the people involved were arrested and are still in custody.

Chief Olemgbe revealed that he had taken the matter to the traditional ruler of the community, HRH, Engr. R.A. Obioha, to find a way of fishing out criminals in their midst.

Efforts by Saturday Sun to reach Eze Obioha failed, as his palace was under lock and key. According to a reliable source, the monarch currently lives in Owerri and is indisposed.