BY SAMUEL OYADONGHA
YENAGOA—The Bayelsa State Police Command has confirmed the kidnap of Mrs Augusta Douglas-Ayam, elder sister to Mr. Oronto Douglas, Special Adviser to the President on Research, Documentation and Strategy.
According to reports, Douglas-Ayam was kidnapped at 8p.m., Monday night, in Ogbia town by unknown gunmen.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hilary Opara, who confirmed the incident to newsmen yesterday in Yenagoa, said he had just returned to the state capital after visiting the scene of the kidnap at Ogbia town.
Opara said that no arrest had been made, but that the Marine Police had been deployed to the creeks to effect the victim’s rescue.
When contacted, spokesman for the state’s Police Command, Mr. Alex Akhigbe, said that officers from Anti-Kidnapping Squad had been deployed to go after the kidnappers.
He said: “We are after the kidnappers and very soon, they will be apprehended and the woman rescued.”
Mr. Gift Douglas, a younger brother to the presidential aide who lives in Abuja, said that he received information about the kidnap of his sister on phone, Monday night.
He said: “I got the information this night (yesterday) that our elder sister has been kidnapped by gunmen, who went to her shop at 8p.m. and shot into the air before taking her away through the creeks.”
He said that the incident had thrown the entire family into mourning.
Meanwhile, Bayelsa Government has expressed shock and disbelief over the incident.
Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Markson Fefegha said that the report of the kidnap came as a shock, but that the state government remained resolute in its determination to stamp out criminal activities in the state.
Fefegha said: “It is sad and embarrassing that it happened at a time the present administration is recording great successes in the area of sustaining existing peace.
“The state government is, however, optimistic that the security agencies will go after the kidnappers and swiftly rescue her.”
‘Have a rethink over the matter, release her’
The Oronto family of Okoroba in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, whose daughter, Douglas-Ayam was abducted, yesterday, pleaded with the kidnappers to give her treatment deserving of any human being and release her on humanitarian ground.
Speaking on behalf of the family, yesterday in Yenagoa, Mr. Romeo Samuel Douglas said: “The kidnap of our daughter has increased our pain as a family that is still in mourning.
“We do hope and pray that those who have kidnapped her will give her the best of treatment deserving of any human being and envision also that they will have a rethink over the matter and release her to reunite with us as a family.”