At least, nine bandits have been reportedly killed while four others were arrested by men of the vigilante group during an exchange of fire at Fapo near Gulu in Azza community of Lapai Local Government Area of Niger State.
The incident, it was learnt that, happened on Sunday when two persons going to pay ransom for an abducted relative coincidentally met in the bush with the men of the vigilante group on a rescue mission.
Those going to pay ransom were sent by the bandits to buy some foodstuff and recharge cards when they met the vigilante members.
A source, who narrated what happened, said the vigilantes reinforced and attacked the bandits, leading to the death of nine of the armed bandits after a gun duel that lasted for hours.
It was reliably gathered that the vigilantes have reinforced and are searching for the kidnappers to effect more arrest if possible.
A resident of Gulu, who spoke with our correspondent on a telephone interview, said, on Saturday night, a woman came into the town naked after escaping from the kidnappers.
She stated that the said woman escaped when rain started falling and she was left with other three women and four men who were tied to trees by the bandits.
Other sources said she was hosted by Gulu district head where she explained details of her ordeal hence vigilantes were mobilized to search and rescue others.
Unfortunately, the four men were said to have been killed by the bandits when they could not account for the women among them, who escaped.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the State, ASP Wasiu Abiodun, when contacted for confirmation, did not respond to his calls or reply messages sent to his phone.