By GBENGA OLARINOYE
OSOGBO — Wife of the Speaker, Osun State House of Assembly, Alhaja Muibat Salaam, yesterday, recounted her ordeals in the hands of those who abducted her last year as the trial of the suspects started at Iwo High Court, Osun state.
Leading witnesses in evidence before Justice Adekunle Adeigbe, State Attorney-General and the Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Wale Afolabi, led the Speaker’s wife who recounted her ordeal.
Mrs. Salaam explained that she was kidnapped by the suspects at Oke-Oyo area, Ejigbo on her way home in the presence of her daughter, Bukola, inside her Honda Accord car, and was whisked away in a truck to a forest along Lagos-Ibadan Expressway located in Obafemi Owode Local Government Area, Ogun State.
She said she was kept in the forest for four days, before vigilante men stormed the forest to rescue her, after appealing to them that she was not part of the gang.
Salaam added that she informed the vigilante men about the other suspects in a particular truck that was parked at the other side of the road, where communication with her husband was being conducted for ransom, noting that vigilante men were able to arrest three suspects in the truck.
In his own account, the head of vigilante group, Mr. Sunday Oniyide, said he was in his office when a palm wine tapper came to inform him about the activities of some armed robbers in the forest where he was sourcing his palm wine.
He said he quickly informed the police at Ajebo police station, before his men stormed the forest, where they engaged the suspects in exchange of fire, before they were overpowered and arrested.
He also confirmed the arrest of the suspects in the parked truck, before they handed them over to the police in Ajebo police station, from where they were later transferred to Eleweran police command in Abeokuta.
In his own account, Speaker Najeem Salaam, stressed that he was coming out of the Governor’s office that day, when his Chief Detail informed him about the incidence, confirming that the suspects used his wife’s mobile phone to call him, demanding for ransom, which he could not offer before they were arrested.
However, the suspects: Chukwudi Okereke, Ogbole Elihah, Okonjwo Lucky, Chukwu Usifo, Kainkine Mahah, and Uwadiunor Philip were sent back to remand when the court adjourned to June 14, 2013.
There were three Defence counsel, Segun Komolafe, F. O Nwosu, and Samuel George who represented the accused.