Central Queensland man abducted in Nigeria overnight

UPDATE 3.45PM: MEMBER for Capricornia Michelle Landry has confirmed she has been in contact with the family of kidnapped Central Queensland man Peter Zoutenbier. 

Ms Landry said she spoke with the family this morning before putting them in touch with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs. 

"We were able to find out that no Aussies had been killed in this and the family was very relieved to hear that," Ms Landry said. 

"Our consulate is working with the abductees to have the group freed."

INITIAL:  A CENTRAL Queensland man is believed to be among a group of contractors kidnapped in Nigeria overnight. 

The family of Peter Zoutenbier, who live throughout the CQ region, have spoken out following the 58-year-old's abduction while working as a contractor for Perth's MacMahon Construction Company for cement company Lafarge Africa. 

>>Aussies kidnapped in Nigeria working for MacMahon

Peter, along with another Australian and a New Zealander, was reportedly taken by armed gunmen who killed the group's local driver during a roadside incident on the outskirts of Calabar about 5.30am local time on Wednesday. 

Peter's sister-in-law Tracey Zoutenbier, who lives in Zilzie, told southern media the family just want to do everything they can to get the group home safe to all of their families. 

"There's still a lot of shock, and we don't know a lot at the moment," Mrs Zoutenbier told The Courier Mail. 

 

 

"It's a bit hard to take in. It's a shock. I think it'll take a few days before it all sinks in. We're just all rallying together." 

She said the situation was still 'very raw' for Peter's wife and children who live in Queensland.

Peter works as a senior maintenance planner at Macmahon and has worked for the company since 2013. 

He has worked extensively int he mining industry throughout Indonesia, Zambia, Papua New Guinea and also spent close to three years working in Kingaroy. 

The Morning Bulletin understands Peter also spent some time in Moranbah for educational purposes. 

The Australian Government is in close contact with the Nigerian government, which Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said were taking the abduction extremely seriously. 

Punch Nigeria reported six people had been taken and named them as "Jack Countentz (Australia); Mark Gabberdy (Australia); Peter Zoutenbier (Australia), Wayne Smith (South Africa), Jamal Khan (New Zealand), Austin Enok (Nigeria) and a driver simply identified as Howel (Nigeria)".'


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