AFRICANGLOBE – Gunmen in southern Nigeria have killed a local driver and kidnapped two Nigerians, three Australians, a New Zealander and a South African working for an Australian mining company, officials said.
The abduction happened in the Akpabuyo district near the capital of Cross River state, Calabar, at about 7am on Wednesday, Nigerian police said on Thursday.
Those taken were believed to be workers with Australian mining and engineering giant Macmahon, which was contracted to cement company LafargeHolcim in the state, police commissioner Jimoh Ozi-Obeh told reporters.
“The police is currently working with the Nigerian Navy to ensure that the victims are released unharmed,” he added.
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said they are working with Nigerian authorities to free their citizens.
“We are working with the authorities, local authorities, at the highest levels,” Turnbull told reporters in Geelong, Australia.
“We don’t know at this stage the identity of the kidnappers and families in Australia are notified of course.
“It is a very serious kidnapping, a very serious criminal assault, one person was killed and seven people have been kidnapped.”