He has been likened to Chukwudubem Onwuamadike, alias Evans, the alleged kidnapper who is widely described as a “billionaire”. The Lagos -based Evans who is now on trial for sundry offences caused grave concerns because of his alleged deadly raids and large sums of money he demanded as ransom for his victims.
The “northern Evans” as Wadume is now called is equally feared because of the large sums of money he is alleged to demand from his victims, his deadly raids and most importantly his connections to local Nigerian Army authorities.
As a result of how he was freed from an army ambush after his arrest by the police last week, there is no name that has attracted so much attention or being on many lips in the security circles and across Nigeria recently more than Hamisu Bala, aka Wadume.
Up till now, most Nigerians could not put a face to the suspected criminal, let alone deconstruct his person. May be the Army unit in Ibi did, however, he has been elusive to the police. For a man that is on social media, with more than 200 friends on Facebook and active until late 2018, it is interesting why he is this elusive yet well -known to some Army officers. His activities also reveal how communities and security agencies “protect” known criminals around the country.
Bala is the suspected kidnapper said to have been arrested by men of Nigeria Police Force attached to the Inspector-General of Police Response Team (IRT) for alleged kidnapping, armed robbery and other related offences; but was freed by some soldiers who attacked and killed three of the policemen (sparking national outrage) and injured others at a road block in Ibi, Ibi Local Government Area of Taraba State.
Politicos.ng contacted sources close to him and our findings are as revealing as they come.
Here are 10 things you did not know about – Hamisu Bala (alias Wadume) – the man who has been in the news for the wrong reason(s):
- He is 35 years old.
- He has two wives and six children.
- He has an Ordinary National Diploma (OND).
- He attended Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic, Bauchi State.
- He also attended College of Agriculture, Jalingo.
- He’s a member of Young Democratic Party (YDP) on whose platform he contested for a seat at the Taraba State House of Assembly in 2019 and lost.
- He is in control of most of the boys in Ibi. They do whatever he wants because most of them are on his payroll.
- It was his boys in the village that shot the tyres of the bus conveying the police to immobilise it before soldiers came to shoot the policemen.
- He came into sudden wealth with no visible means or source of income. Bala is a heavy philanthropist, giving grants and scholarship running into millions of naira to residents of Ibi and environs.
- He enjoys a very cordial relationship with the Army personnel in Ibi and its environs being one of their major benefactors in terms of welfare packages.
Today, many of the youths of Ibi have been arrested as investigations widen over his many activities. Some Army officers and men have been arrested too.