The Nigerian army says the troops of 17 Brigade and police officers prevented bandits from abducting several worshippers in Jibia Local Government Area of Katsina on Monday.
Military Spokesperson, Mohammed Yerima in a statement on Tuesday disclosed that a large number of bandits came firing sporadically in an attempt to disrupt the prayers and abduct worshippers from Magama Central Mosque.
He said the abductors were forced to abandon the hostages after a hot pursuit and the victims have been reunited with their families.
“On getting the information, the combined team mounted a pursuit on the bandits, forcing them to abandon most of the hostages while fleeing with an unknown number.
“The rescued victims have since been reunited with their families while further efforts are ongoing to rescue the others in collaboration with neighbouring military establishments including those of Niger Republic,” Yerima said.
Yerima in the statement explained further that the bandits were overwhelmed following efforts of the combined team.
“They were met with overwhelming firepower from a combined team comprising troops and police personnel who were tactically deployed in the town following earlier Intelligence received on the planned attack.
Late-night prayers are very common among the Muslim faithful particularly in the last days of the Holy Ramadan season.
The military also assured that the situation in Jibia is under control as reinforcements have since arrived the area in order to facilitate the rescue efforts.
The local inhabitants are advised to go ahead with their normal business and report any suspicious activity to the security agency nearest to them.