Our Ordeal in hands of kidnappers in Ondo —Lagos travellers recount

By: Ade Adeleke

…..We trekked for Hours in Ondo Forest without food

…….We rescued them with DSS, Police, others —Amotekun Commander

Victims of recent Kidnapping on Idoani-Ifira Akoko axis in Ondo state, have recounted their experiences in the hand of their abductors after they were rescued by Amotekun Corps.

The Operatives of the Ondo state security network codenamed Amotekun Corps had on wednesday rescued 9 of the 12 travellers abducted by some gunmen in the state on Ifira Akoko -Idoani road, while the Corps rescued the remaining three victims on Friday night at the forest around the axis.

SUNSHINETRUTH had on wednesday reported how the victims, who were passengers coming from Abuja and heading to Lagos in an 18 seater bus, were attacked by the armed men along the road and demanded N10million naira.

Speaking with SUNSHINETRUTH reporter at Amotekun Headquarters in Akure, three of the rescued kidnapped victims, Mr Benjamin Ojoga, Miss Omolara Fajana and Mrs Faith Sunday, confirmed that they were coming from Abuja and going to Lagos when the gunmen attacked their vehicle on the road and shot gun bullets to the air before taking them to the forest.

Three of the victims

Ojoga and Fajana noted that they trekked in the forest for more than 3hours on wednesday without eating and drinking water.

Ojoga who sustained injury in one of his hand, said the kidnappers injured him because they suspected he was a securityman.

Faith Sunday expressed appreciation to God for using Amotekun men to rescue them from the den of the gunmen who were ruthless in their approach.

Fajana said, “It was on Monday, 6th of September, we were coming from Abuja and after leaving Ibilo around the bad portion, our bus got stuck at that particular place and it took us like three hours before we were able to come out.”

“Shortly after there ,we got to Ifira Akoko and saw another bad portion, so the driver asked us to come down so that the bus will be lighter and we all alighted.”

“As the bus came out of that muddy part of the road, we heard gun shots and everyone scattered and running from one angle to the other.”

“Shortly after that we saw that the bus did not stop, he kept moving and that was how we were kidnapped.”

Ojoga said, “While we were being taken to the bush, they beat me and wounded me because they were saying I am a force man. They kept beating me that I should tell them the truth. They said I looked like a force man.”

Father of one of the victims, Mr Ojo Fajana who came from Lagos after receiving distress calls from her daughter Omolola, confirmed that the kidnappers demanded N10million ransom.

Mr Ojo Fajana disclosed that the gunmen who warned him against arguing with them, asked him to take the cash to Akungba Akoko from Ifira and later when he got to Akungba, he was also directed to take the money to Isua Akoko, before Amotekun rescued the victims.

Addressing newsmen in Akure, the Corps Commander of Amotekun corps in the state, Chief Adetunji Adeleye said the victims were rescued after his men gave the kidnappers hot chase for several hours, noting that they carried out the operations with the help of other security operatives in the state such as the DSS, Nigeria Police and others.

Adeleye explained that in the process to avoid casualties in the rescue operation, his men did not exchange gun fire with the criminals, noting that they restricted their operations to Ondo state boundary while the kidnappers escaped to a neighbouring state.

“Our men responded to the gunshots and a distress call. they got there on time and were able to pursue the kidnappers and rescued the first nine passengers early,” Adeleye opined.

The Amotekun Commander said “the vehicle and the driver had been released to the Police,” adding that the corps was still devising security strategy to track down the kidnappers.