Rivers United coach Stanley Eguma has been kidnapped by unknown gunmen along the Enugu highway, the Nigeria Police Force confirmed.
The incident happened on Tuesday along Enugu Road when the seasoned NPFL coach was returning to the team base in Port Harcourt.
According to the police statement, his two assistants were freed while Eguma was the only victim kidnapped.
Meanwhile, the Enugu State Police Command has commenced investigation to rescue Eguma, according to Goal.
“The order is sequel to a complaint made to the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the command, the same date as the incident at about 5:05 pm, by two other persons travelling with the victim,” the police statement read, as per People’s Gazette.
“His co-travellers alleged that the unidentified gunmen, operating in a white-coloured Hilux van, trailed and forced the black-coloured Hilux van conveying them from Gombe to Port-Harcourt, to stop.
“They further alleged that the assailants pushed the two of them out and made away with the vehicle, abducting the victim in the process.”
Rivers United are fifth in the NPFL table with 45 points after 27 matches – five points adrift of leaders Akwa United.
The security of lives and properties in Nigeria has been a major concern for football stakeholders, and this week’s incident is not the first recorded.
Earlier this year, Adamawa United were attacked by unknown gunmen along the Benin-Ore expressway during a trip to Lagos for a league match against MFM FC.
The incident resulted in the abduction of their driver who was later released after a ransom of ₦1 million was paid.
In March 2020, Abia Warriors duo Dayo and Benjamin Iluyomade were also kidnapped while travelling along the Benin-Owo expressway but they regained their freedom three days later.