Abuja: Nigerian police said on Sunday they
have arrested three people suspected of kidnapping the son of
the country`s first Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa.
"Three suspects have been nabbed after a gun battle,"
police spokesman Moshood Jimoh told a news agency but gave no details on
the incident or the condition of Balewa.
Jhalil Tafawa Balewa, 60, the son of late Prime
Minister Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, was abducted in Abuja where
he heads a campaign group drumming up support for President
Goodluck Jonathan in the elections scheduled for 2011.
His father Tafawa Balewa ruled Nigeria from 1957 to
until January 1966 when he was assassinated in the country`s
first military coup.
Jhalil has not been in the limelight as he was engaged
in medical practice and businesses.
It is yet to be uncovered if the motive behind the
kidnapping is political but sudden appearance of this historic
figure`s son may have jolted the northern political class who
see Jonathan as coming to usurp their turn in a fragile
power sharing agreement within the Peoples Democratic Party
The ruling party has an arrangement that zoned
presidency to the north in the next election but the sudden
death of President Umaru Musa Yar`Adua from the north that was
yet to finish is tenure earlier this year led to the swearing
in of Jonathan from the south.
Jonathan, who is widely expected to contest the
January 2011 poll, has not openly declared his candidature but
set up campaign offices in some parts of the country.
Kidnappings in Nigeria often take place for huge
amount of money as ransom and politically motivated abductions
are very rare.