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Dangote Cement Workers Held Captive for One Week as Kidnappers Demand N5 Million Ransom

An unknown number of workers from Dangote Cement, one of Nigeria’s largest cement producers, are still being held captive by kidnappers in Edo State. The company is a subsidiary of the Dangote Industries owned by one of Africa’s leading businessmen Aliko Dangote.

The abduction took place at gunpoint on Monday, May 13, while the workers were traveling home on a company bus from the company’s factory in the Okpella area of Edo State in southern Nigeria. Three employees were shot during the attack and are still in the hospital.

Among the abducted is one Abah James Ogwu. His son, Victor Ogwu, spoke to PUNCH, revealing that the kidnappers are demanding N5 million to release the father. According to him, they initially demanded a hefty ransom of N15 million but have since lowered their request to N5 million following negotiations with the family.

Both Dangote Industries and local authorities have yet to officially comment on the incident.

The abduction of the Dangote staff adds to recent incidents targeting workers in the oil-producing state of Nigeria’s Niger Delta region, where more than 90 percent of the nation’s oil resources are extracted. Gunmen killed three staff of Okomu Oil Palm Co. Plc on May 6 in the same state, and four other workers were wounded in another attack on May 7.

—Ezinwanne Onwuka reports for TruthNigeria from Abuja.

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