Frequent cases of missing children in Asaba and its environs in the past few weeks have sparked tension in Delta state, as the trend was attributed to ritualists and ‘Yahoo boys’. People in the area have now cried out that they are under siege.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mustafa Muhammad confirmed to newsmen that over 16 cases of missing children in Asaba have been reported in the last one month, adding that “we are thinking there must be members of these ritualists we are yet to uncover. However, we are working with other security agencies to ensure those behind the act are brought to book”.
Since last Thursday, the family of Linus Nwoba are still in rude shock over their missing six-year-old boy.
It was gathered that the missing lad and other members of the family live around Omiregboma camp located in the suburb of Asaba, and had gone out to buy biscuit but did not return home.
Speaking to newsmen, the father of the missing boy said, “My son said he was going to buy biscuit… that was all we saw of him. We have searched for him everywhere to no avail. We have reported the matter to the police, he is the only son I have now”.
But the police commissioner, Muhammed, who confirmed the incident, said the police were in search of the boy’s whereabouts adding that “We have beamed our search lights to fish out the boy. We call on members of the public to help with useful information that will lead to Chukwudi’s whereabouts”.
Meanwhile, unconfirmed sources say the frequent missing of children in Asaba and environs may not be unconnected with the increasing rate of cyber crime activities often linked to “Yahoo, Yahoo boys” and other youths who are out to get rich at all costs.
An Asaba resident, who spoke to newsmen on condition of anonymity, said, “Ritual activities to get rich is the major work in Asaba. No more lands to sell. The youths don’t do odd jobs to survive, rather they get involved in Yahoo, Yahoo including ritual activities. They spend money they get through dubious means.”
Investigation revealed that several youths, believed to be involved in “Yahoo, Yahoo” including ritual activities in Asaba, have died in mysterious circumstances, especially with swollen legs and stomach.
Ogbueshi Nwandu Sylvester, who spoke to newsmen, said “We are really disturbed here in Asaba. The missing children issues are traced to ritual activities. We have resolved at the elders’ council to place curses on the perpetrators. Asaba is under siege of rituals, and Yahoo, Yahoo activities”.