Gunmen Kidnap Four in Ikole LGA, Demand N20m Ransom


Gunmen struck along Oke Ako-Irele Road in Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State southwest of Nigeria on Wednesday, July 6 evening and allegedly whisked away no fewer than four people.

It was reported that the kidnapping occurred at about 7.30 pm involving occupants of two vehicles, a commercial car and a mini-truck, who were accosted.

A source at Oke Ako alleged that the driver, a native of the neighbouring Ipao-Ekiti and a passenger were abducted in the commercial vehicle while the driver and his assistant were taken away in the mini-truck, which he said was conveying charcoal.

Other sources, however, said they could not ascertain the exact number of the victims whether lower or higher than four.

An eyewitness at Oke Ako said, “We were in a meeting at about 8 pm on Wednesday when we got information that there were two vehicles with doors opened and the headlights were on the road, but that there was nobody in the vehicles.

“On getting there, we saw a commercial vehicle and a mini-truck. But before we got there, the occupants of the two vehicles had been abducted by the kidnappers. The abductors had been calling since Wednesday night requesting N20million as a ransom for the victims.

“The commercial car driver said he did not know where they were in the bush but that all he knew was that they were near a river as they could hear sounds of a flowing river. However, men of the Police Rapid Response Squad, Ametekun Corps, and local hunters have been combing the bush to rescue them. It is our prayer that they get them hale and hearty.”

Another eyewitness at the scene said that the kidnappers requested the sum of N20 million ransom, adding that the communities in Ekamefa comprising Irele, Ijowa, Oke Ako, Ipao, Itapaji and Iyemero were living in fear of the kidnappers, who he said had surrounded the area.

It was recalled on Sunday, September 12, 2021, when bandits on the Ayetoro-Ewu road were shooting sporadically holding AK47 rifles and shot at an oncoming cream colour Toyota Venza and he later faced other motorists as victims and eyewitnesses relay their experience.

A witness at Ekamefa said, “Insecurity is a big problem in our area here. Our people are not safe, nobody can go to the farm again without being kidnapped.

“We, Ekamefa, call on the state and federal governments to help us, we are helpless in the hands of the gunmen. There are soldiers at Ipao, there are soldiers at Oke Ako. This kidnap incident happened around there, we need help,” the witness said.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti State Command, Sunday Abutu, who confirmed the kidnap incident, however, said he was still expecting the details after investigations are done.

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