Where is 25-year-old Cynthia Amarachi, a National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member serving in Osun State?
What happened to her on March 15, after she left the state en route to Lagos for a weekend with her parents?
These are the questions her mother, siblings and friends have been asking following her mysterious disappearance.
Their agonies further worsened after visiting hospitals and mortuaries to find out whether she was involved in an accident.
Her mother, a primary school teacher, Mrs. Constance Nwawike, said they have reported the incident to the police in Lagos and Osun states without success.
She said at a point, the police tracked one of her phones to Ogun-Oyo forest where some suspects were arrested, but later freed, adding that her other phone was traced to Kano State.
The woman, who said Amarachi, the only graduate they suffered to train, was a level headed and reserved woman, noted that they only knew about her disappearance about a week after March 15 when she was contacted by officials of the NYSC in Osun State that Amarachi was yet to return from Lagos.
“Before then, we had been worried as we could not reach her on the phone.
”On that fateful day, March 15, I called my daughter’s number, but it was switched off. I thought it was network problem. I did not call again. On Monday, I called the number again, but no response. I continued for three days without a response. I then informed my husband. All of us became worried.
“Her younger sister even complained that she (Amarachi) didn’t call to wish her happy birthday. It has not been an easy period for us. We have visited churches and we were told she is still alive. I am just begging anyone who is holding her to please release her for us,” she said amid tears.
Mrs. Nwawike said Amarachi’s friend, who notified the NYSC about her trip, said she boarded a commercial vehicle at Iwo Road en route to Lagos and they exchanged pleasantries, promising to inform them once she arrived her parents’ Ikorodu home.
“But when they got no response and called several times without a response, her colleagues reportedly went on the social media to trace her parents, which eventually paid off,” she said.
The woman said she received a call from her daughter’s service centre a week later that they were looking for her.
“The state coordinator also called and reported that they did not see her after she travelled home. Shocked at the unfolding drama, I told them that she did not return to our home in Ikorodu. I made further enquiry, the coordinator said her friend, also a corps member, told them that she travelled to meet us in Lagos and since then, she had been calling her number without reply.
“I asked the man (NYSC state coordinator) to give me the corps member’s number. I talked to her and she said she had been trying to reach me. I reported the case at Ikorodu Police Station. They said I should go to Ibadan because the lady made it known that she took Ibadan-Iwo Road and when she got a vehicle going to Ikorodu, they had a conversation. She told her that she had boarded a bus going to Ikorodu and her friend said she wished her safe trip. Since then, she had not seen or heard from her. I went to the school where she was serving in Osun State and the head teacher told me the same thing.
“Since then, I have tried my best. We had gone as far as reporting to the anti-kidnapping squad and they told us that they had tracked her number to Kano. They later told me that they made some arrests and I asked how far, but the policemen keep ‘posting me’. Last week I called them, but they said that they would call me back, but they didn’t call me back.
“I also reported the case at the Osun State Police Command. They invited me for an interview, but when I got there, they said I should connect them with the anti-kidnapping unit investigating the matter in Lagos, which I did, only for the police in Osun to say that they have been trying the number of their colleagues at the anti- kidnapping unit without success,” Mrs. Nwawike said.