April 20, 2010

Police rescue kidnapped NIFOR boss

By Gabriel Enogholase
BENIN – BARELY 24 hours after Deputy Inspector General of Police, Udom Ekpoudom, gave a marching order to the police in Edo State to arrest the rising incidence of kidnappings, the police in the state yesterday said that they had rescued the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Institute for Oil Palm Research, NIFOR, Dr. Dere Okiy, who was kidnapped on Monday.

State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Emmanuel Udeoji, at a press conference in Benin, disclosed that Dr. Okiy was rescued at about 10.30 p.m. yesterday.

He disclosed that Dr. Okiy was leaving his office at about 5.30 p.m. Monday when he was kidnapped by four armed men at Evboneka village along the Benin- Akure Road.

He told journalists that the kidnappers forced their victims into the booth of their vehicle, with registration No. JA 762 KJA which was sighted along Ekiadolor-Ekonobore area.

He further disclosed that the Police on receipt of the information of the incident, immediately alerted patrol officers and were at the nipping points just as he said that the kidnappers later abandoned their vehicle at a point and took Dr. Okiy away on foot.

Mr. Udeoji explained that a combined team of police operatives and patrol officers combed the bush at the point where NIFOR CEO was taken away and closed up on the kidnappers who he said later abandoned their victim.

Recounting his ordeal, Dr. Okiy, who disclosed that one of his two security aides was shot by the kidnappers, revealed that he was taken into the jungle in the forest where his two hands were tied behind him.

He said that at a point three of his captors left and never returned, while the fourth member of the gang after waiting for his colleagues, also fled, leaving him behind.

He said at this point, he managed to get up and started trekking for about one hour before he found himself on a road in the night where he saw the police in search of him.

Dr. Okiy thanked God and the police for taking prompt action to rescue him.
Meanwhile, five suspected kidnappers who threatened and got N120, 000 from their victim have been arrested by the police.

The suspects Mr. Emmanuel Udeoji, disclosed had earlier demanded for N10million, had the sum of N120,000 paid into an account belonging to one of them at Koko where he was arrested while trying to cash the money