By DAUD OLATUNJI
ABEOKUTA — Barely 24 hours to Christmas celebration, former Primate of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Most Reverend Peter Jasper Akinola was, yesterday, abducted in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
He was, however, rescued hours later by the state police command.
Ogun State Police Command said it rescued the ex-CAN President at Ijoga Price in Abeokuta North Local Government Area of the state.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Muyiwa Adejobi told Vanguard on phone that, the rescue operation was like a war that lasted two hours.
Adejobi said, men of Nigeria Police and the gang engaged in gun duel for hours before the cleric was rescued.
He said: “It was a war because before we could rescue the old man. We found out that, apart from the man and his driver, one of his children was there.
“We have 10 teams of policemen that participated in the rescue operation. Three of the teams were escorting the victims to their house. And the remaining teams are still there in the bush because the place is wide.”
When asked if it was a case of kidnapping, Adejobi said it would be too early to conclude, saying the command would find out from the victims during interrogation.
The 69-year-old cleric was reportedly waylaid by unknown gunmen at about 3:00 pm, in front of the main entrance of the Peter Akinola Foundation Centre for Youth Industrial Training at Kilometre10, Abeokuta-Lagos expressway and seized with his driver, whose name could not be ascertained at press time.
A source close to the retired primate told Vanguard that Akinola was returning from the youth training centre where he had gone to inspect some ongoing projects.
Vanguard learnt that the abductors blocked the Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) conveying the cleric and started shooting into the air before he was taken away in his vehicle.