Vanguard News Nigeria

Kidnappers demand N15m ransom for Catholic priest

… as abductors of Akoko-Edo APC chair want demand N20m

By Perez Brisibe & Alemma Aliu

OREROPKE—THE abductors of the parish priest of Emmanuel Catholic Church, Aragba, Oviri Okpe, Okpe Local Government Area of Delta State have demanded for a ransom of N15 million for his release.

Kidnap

The priest, Rev Fr. Christopher Ogaga, who is also the Principal of St. Peters Clavers College, Aghalokpe, was abducted around Arava-Oviri-Orere-Okpe Road last Saturday on his way to Effurun, while trying to meet up for mass the next day at the Mother of Redeemer Catholic Church.

A source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, hinted that the priest had left Aghalopke at about 10p.m. on Saturday for Warri to assist the Parish Priest of Mother of Redeemer Catholic Church, Airport Junction, Effurun, for the three masses scheduled for Sunday morning.

According to the source, “unfortunately, he never got to his destination and it is pretty unclear what precise location he was abducted.

“His abductors have made contact with the church and are making a demand of N15 million as ransom. But we are on the trail of the hoodlums and I assure you that he would be rescued and the hoodlums arrested.”

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Muhammad Mustapha, who confirmed the abduction on television yesterday, said the priest was abducted on Saturday along Arava-Oviri-Orere-Okpe Road, while travelling to another parish in Warri.

Mustapha added that operatives of the command had begun a search to ensure the safe return of the priest.

… in Edo

Similarly, kidnappers of the Akoko-Edo Local Government Area Chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Henry Ashofor, have demanded N20 million ransom before they would released the pharmacist-turned politician.

Vanguard gathered that the abductors called his wife on Sunday evening, made the demand and insisted that they would not shift grounds in their demand.

Ashofor was kidnapped on Saturday evening near Ayetoro along the Igarra-Ibillo Road, on his way home from Igarra where he had attended a burial ceremony with other politicians.

At press time, the council Chairman, Don Umoru, was in a peace and security meeting with top government officials and security agencies.

A leader of the party confided in Vanguard: “We are still on it. Some hours ago, they called that we should bring N20 million. We are having security and peace meeting as we speak.”

List kidnaps,robberies in Igarra

The Secretary to the Otaru of Igarra, Folorunsho Dania, has called on the Federal Government to come to the aid of the local government.

He said: “The activities of these hoodlums have become so worrisome. Almost on a daily basis, they carry out their heinous crimes. Deacon Ashofor was kidnapped on Saturday on the same route, where they carry out their crimes.

“Just last week, a retired principal was kidnapped on the same route. Few days back at Okpe Junction, people who were coming from a function were attacked by gunmen and the four tyres of their vehicle shattered.

“Few months ago, two retired matrons from the General Hospital were kidnapped in Igarra. We have not even recovered from the robbery that killed several lives recently.”

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