Dayo Johnson, Akure
A mother of three and a timber merchant in Ondo town, Ondo state, Mrs Folakemi Fadoju has raised the alarm that kidnappers live like kings inside the forest along Ore/Ijebu Ode expressway.
The 41-year-old mother said this while narrating her ordeal to Vanguard after she escaped from the kidnappers den.
Folakemi, who spent four days in their captivity, was abducted alongside her seven-year-old son in Ondo town, Ondo State by four gunmen in her sawmill at about 6.45am.
She explained that the four gunmen invaded the sawmill located in Oka along Ondo-Ore road around 6:45am while she was at the sawmill to settle a business transaction
The traumatized mother said the hoodlums, who blindfolded her, bundled her and her sick son into a waiting vehicle, shooting into the air, before taking them to a forest along Ore- Ijebu Ode where she spent four days without food or water.
Folakemi explained “I left early for sawmills to attend to some business and pay my workers who are traveling on this fateful day, but no sooner that I entered the sawmill, these men dragged me into their vehicle, blindfolded me and drove off.
“They drove for some hours and we had to trekked to their hideouts where i met two other people tied to the trees. They demanded for my phone which they used to call my husband. They threatened to kill me if my husband tried to play smart by informing the police.
“The kidnappers contacted my husband, and negotiated for N15m ransom to secure my freedom and our little boy.
“They told me they were kidnappers and said they abducted me because of ransom. They said if I don’t have money they will take my life”
” They tied me and two others that l met inside the forest and subjected us to all form of tortures and threatened to kill me and my son if my husband failed to produced the ransom within 48 hours.
“They tortured me and others with no food or water to drink but they gave my boy water for the four days. They operated in the forest like king”
On how she escaped “Our escape from the hands of the kidnappers was made possible by divine intervention, l can’t explain what happened in the forest that made the abductors to leave us.
“On the fourth day, we started hearing gunshot in the forest; it was so heavy that the two men assigned to guard us had to leave to join others members of the gang to see what was happening.
“They warned us against leaving the camp, but when they left, one of us suggested we should try to escape and it worked. Even though I was weak, tired and sick, I managed to walk for over an hour before coming out at J4 area where we met a Samaritan who listened to our story and took us to the police in Ondo town”
She said the case had been reported earlier at Yaba Police Station by her family.
“It was a nightmare and the trauma is not explainable. I experienced it and survived it by the special grace of God. I never wished my worst enemy to go through what I passed through because it was so traumatizing .
She, however, appealed to the security operatives in the state to move into action and raid all the forests along Ore/ Ijebu Ode road where the criminals use as their hideouts.
Folakemi added “Many people are still in that forest waiting to be rescued.”
Meanwhile, the spokesperson of the state police command, Funmi Odunlami, said that total war has been declared on “criminals” who want to give the peaceful sunshine state a bad name.