'Dem kidnap me and now na only train I dey use travel'

Manir Awal Addo
Image example Manir Awal Addo say lai lai im no go follow road travel again afta dem kidnap am

To avoid Nigeria notorious kidnapping gangs, thousands of commuters dey pack ontop trains each day between di capital, Abuja, and di city of Kaduna.

Mannir Awal Addo wey be trader for Abuja, say one time wey e go visit im family for Kaduna, dem kidnap am for di Abuja-Kaduna highway earlier dis year and dem hold am for days.

Im tell BBC say im pay di kidnappers $1,300 (£1,000) for im freedom: "Na experience wey no dey very bad for me"

Addo bin catch polio when e be pikin so im no fit run away when di kidnappers attack di vehicle im dey travel inside.

"Since then, honestly I no dey use car transport because I dey fear for di road. E better for me to take di train because e dey safe."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image example Police officers wit gun dey follow di train travel

By road di 150km (93-mile) journey between di two cities dey cheaper and shorter, but e don become matter of life and death as plenty travellers dey suffer kidnap along di highway - and dem dey kill many odas.

When di train line wey dey link Abuja to Kaduna (wey China drop $500m loan for) open for 2016, pipo use am because na new tin, as many of di kontri railway system don spoil finish from colonial era.

Image example Many happy say dem even fit see place tanda for di journey

"When di mata really serious, di road dey see 10 kidnappings per day wit 20 different groups wey dey operate on dat route," na so police commander Abba Kyari, wey dey head special unit to fight kidnappers tok.

Di real number go even dey higher because some families, like that of Mr Addo, decide not to report to officials, but instead im follow di kidnappers negotiate directly.

Train passenger and postgraduate student Idris Mohammed, wey dey travel by road to Kaduna for weekends, say im no mind to pay more for im safety as "di roads now dey too dangerous".

Image example Passengers feel safe on di train pass for road

Why pipo no dey live for Abuja?

For most of di civil servants wey dey work for di capital yearly rents dey as high as $15,000 and dis dey too expensive.

Many instead dey go Kaduna, di commercial hub of northern Nigeria, wia house dey cheaper. Kaduna dey very different to Abuja, as e dey bubble well. But Abuja dey slow.

So for weekends, Abuja dey empty. And di pipo wey dey travel comot week-in, week-out na prime targets for di kidnappers dem.

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