Security operatives in Kano yesterday morning rescued Magajin Garin Daura, Alhaji Musa Umar Uba, who was kidnapped two months ago by gunmen in his palace.
News of his release sparked spontaneous celebrations in Daura, the home town of President Muhammadu Buhari in Katsina State.
His family members and residents trooped to the streets to thank God for answered prayers and to appreciate the security agents for securing the traditional ruler’s freedom.
The president of Daura Development Association (DEDA), Alhaji Aliyu Bala, told LEADERSHIP that they were in joyful mood in appreciation of God for answering their prayers, noting that for two months the kidnappers kept them on edge over the fate of the district head.
Bala said: “I don’t have much to say rather than to give thanks to Almighty God for his safe release; it’s a welcome development. We pray for Almighty Allah to guide and protect the country as we give thanks to Him for answering our prayers for the rescue of Magi Garin.
“We also pray for the safe release of those still in captivity. May Allah guide and protect our country for peace and security in general,” he said.
Earlier, Daura residents turned out in their numbers to visit the Magajin Garin’s family, where the Dan Lawan Daura, Alhaji Umar Umar Ata, who is the younger brother of the freed district head, told newsmen that they were grateful to the people of the emirate and security agencies for their tireless efforts that led to the rescue of Alhaji Uba.
Ata said: “I can tell you that he (Magajin Garin) has been rescued alive and in sound health. He was rescued in Kano. We thank God for that.”
The spokesman of the Katsina State police command, Mr. Gambo Isah, also confirmed his release in a post to journalists.
Isah said: “Magajin Garin Daura has been rescued. Congratulations to the entire people of Daura and Katsina State in general.”
Another younger brother of the district head, Malam Tukur Umar, said in Daura that the Magajin Garin Daura was rescued yesterday.
He said that his elder brother was rescued by a combined team of security operatives after a serious gun battle with his captors who were holed up in a secluded house along Madobi Road in Samagu Quarters close to Sani Abacha Youth Centre, Kano.
“He was rescued in good condition of health and any moment from now he may be in Daura to be reunited with his family. Alhamdulillah, God has answered our prayers,” he said.
Sources claimed last night that Uba had been taken to Abuja from where he would return to Daura.
But the Kano State police command said that the district head was rescued unhurt by the IGP Intelligence Response Team in an operation conducted on Monday night in Kumbotso local government area of the state.
The command’s public Relations Officer, DSP Haruna Abdullahi, stated this in a statement he issued to newsmen in Kano.
He said that the IGP’s “Operation Puff Adder” Intelligence Response Team in conjunction with Kano State police command carried out the operation at Gangan Ruwa Quarters, Kumbotso local government area, at 8:00 pm on Monday.
“The operation was conducted at 2000hrs and Magajin Garin Daura, was rescued unhurt, arrests were made and arms and ammunition recovered,” he said.
He, however, did not give details on the number of those held, but said that the area had been cordoned off and efforts were being intensified to arrest all the suspects.
Uba, a retired comptroller of customs turned senior traditional title holder in Daura Emirate in Katsina State and father of Fatima, who is married to Buhari’s Aide De Camp (ADC), Col. Mohammed Abubakar. He was abducted by gunmen in his Daura residence at about 7pm after Magrib prayers on Wednesday, May 1, 2019.
The kidnappers stormed his house in a light blue Peugeot 504 salon, shooting sporadically into the air before they whisked him away in the boot of the car as pandemonium ensued with the residents running in different direction.
As soon as the hood wearing gunmen left with him, security operatives in Daura and across the state spread their drag net in an effort to rescue him and arrest his abductors, who had a close shave with police patrol teams in Kusada Division but escaped with the traditional ruler after shooting a police officer, Inspector Muntari Maikudi, in the ensuing gun duel.
After his abduction, the Emir of Daura, Alhaji Umar Faruk Umar, ordered special prayers in Jumma’at mosques in the emirate as the people intensified regular prayers at the Emir’s Palace among other places for the safe return of the Daura prince and royal father.
Until Uba was rescued yesterday morning, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tactical Squad, State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Police Mobile Force (MPF) and Counter Terrorism units were dispatched to rescue the traditional ruler.
As the residents of eagerly awaited the return of traditional ruler yesterday, many of them gathered in groups discussing the cheering news with excitement.
One of the residents, Bashir Daura, a commercial tricycle operator, said: “Today will remain a special day in our lives because it marks the freedom of the district head of Daura in the hands of his abductors.” Some of the residents gathered in a house where the owner feted them with food and soft drinks to mark the traditional ruler’s release.