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Kidnappers Abduct Four People Returning From Party In Oyo, Demand N200m

Posted by Samuel on Sat 20th Apr, 2024 -

Omogbolahan Olakunle, Rafiu Oriade Jolaiya, Nurudeen Olaitan Salami and Ernest were said to be returning to Lagos on Thursday when they were kidnapped at about 5 pm around the Maya axis of Lanlate-Eruwa highway by suspected herdsmen.


Four men who departed from their neighborhood in the Iyana Ilogbo area of Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State to attend a party in Shaki area of Oyo State on Wednesday have not yet returned home.

Omogbolahan Olakunle, Rafiu Oriade Jolaiya, Nurudeen Olaitan Salami and Ernest were said to be returning to Lagos on Thursday when they were kidnapped at about 5 pm around the Maya axis of Lanlate-Eruwa highway by suspected herdsmen.

The party was organised by a community leader in Ilogbo, Saheed Salau, who lost his beloved mother a few days ago.

The abductors were said to have contacted some family members of the victims and demanded a ransom of N50 million on each of the victims, totalling N200 million.

The kidnappers threatened to kill their victims if ransom was not paid by the deadline on Saturday.

Salawat, wife to one of the victims, Nurudeen, said: “The incident occurred around evening of Thursday, April 18. I still sent him a message around 4.25 pm and he replied to my message. So, he was abducted around 5 pm.

“He and three others were returning from a burial programme at Saki. The son of the woman who died is the chairman of our community development association, Mr Saheed Salau.

“He lost his mother on the day of the Muslim festival that was celebrated recently and Wednesday was the eighth-day prayer for the deceased. It was while they were returning that they were kidnapped.

“The wife of one of the other victims was the person who broke the news of their abduction to us.

“Initially, I thought she was joking, but she insisted that my husband took the phone from her husband and confirmed they had been kidnapped by herdsmen.

“The herdsmen later spoke with the father-in-law of another victim and demanded a ransom of N200 million for the release of the four men.

“When we tried to reach them again on their mobile phone, a male voice who claimed to be a policeman attached to the Lanlate Divisional Headquarters explained that they found their phones and bags at the spot where they were kidnapped.

‘’The CDA chairman, Mr Salau, who hosted the party, has since visited the police station and the kidnappers later spoke on the phone with the family member of another victim, who is a lawyer. The conversation was recorded.

“In the audio recording, the kidnappers warned that they would not accept anything less than N15 million for each of their victims, and they threatened to kill any victim whose ransom was not paid.’’

In one of the five audio files of the conversation between the kidnappers and family members of the victims, one of the herdsmen was heard threatening to kill the victim if they brought small money.

Speaking in poor Yoruba, the herdsmen said: “I don’t have patience o. I don’t want small money o…if you bring me small money, I will kill your brother…

“You did not mention the actual amount that you can afford, whether N10 million or N2 million. What nonsense are you saying? If the amount I asked you to pay is not complete, I will kill these people (victims) in the next two days.

“I swear, if I don’t see the money between today and tomorrow, I swear I will carry these people and kill them.’’

In another audio file, one of the victims was heard pleading with his brother to do all that he could to raise the ransom money, saying that his legs had been badly wounded by the kidnappers.

“Egbon (brother), these people (kidnappers) are not joking at all. They meant everything they told you on the phone o. I beg you in the name of God, do whatever you can to raise money for my freedom.

“Our abductors smashed my legs with hard wood and they killed two other victims we met in their custody in the forest. These kidnappers are very serious about their threats.

At a point, the leader of the kidnap gang seized the phone and further threatened to kill the victims, saying: “If I don’t see the money (ransom), I will take your brother to the road and kill him there, and you will meet his body there…

“My question is, have you gathered the money or not? If you don’t bring the money in the next two days, I will kill your brother o.’’

Speaking with his wife, Nurudeen, an automobile mechanic, urged her to sell his bus and use the proceeds to pay his abductors for his freedom.

He said: “Please hurry up and gather the money because tomorrow is the deadline for the payment of the ransom otherwise these kidnappers will kill us.

“They are beating us but just look for how to raise money for our ransom o…please get my phone and sell it and add more money to it to secure my release.’’

The Public Relations Officer of the Oyo State Police Command, Mr Wale Osifeso, could not be reached for comments at press time.

However, the Commissioner of Police, Oyo State, Mr. Ade Hamzat, in a telephone conversation with our correspondent, said inquiry into the incident has started.

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