Epe Farmers’ Abductors Demand N25m

 Epe Farmers’ Abductors Demand N25m

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Kidnappers of a 65-yearold guard, Kakaja Joseph, and four other poultry workers at Igbodu in Epe area of Lagos State on Sunday have asked for N25 million ransom from the victims’ family members. It was learnt that the militants cum kidnappers established contacted with the son of the guard about 9p.m. on Monday and demanded N5 million each from the captives.
The guard’s son, Isaiah Joseph, who spoke with our correspondent yesterday on the phone, said he was already sleeping when the strange caller called him and asked for the ransom.
He said: “Since Sunday when my father was kidnapped, I have moved into the community to pacify my mother. When I picked up my phone, the caller told me not to be panic that they were the ones who kidnapped my father.
The caller said that what they were after was money and we should hasten up and get them the money. “But we cannot afford the money they are demanding. The salaries of those who were kidnapped in three years cannot pay the ransom. These are people who are just earning between N15,000 to N20,000 monthly.
How do you expect them to get such amount of money?” Isaiah explained that the family members were doing their best to rescue their father from the kidnappers’ den. He added: “We are concerned about his health, because the Kodjo poultry management is not helping matters.
They are not coming forth to give us the clear picture of the situation. All they are after is their own business. “The economic activities of the community have been paralysed owing to the attacks by the gunmen in this area. We want police presence in our area; even travellers are not safe anymore.”
It was reported that about 20 armed men, dressed in military camouflage uniform on Sunday, swooped on Kodjo Farm and abducted five people. They later blocked the Molajoye Road and kidnapped two travellers.
Also on Monday morning, the kidnappers attempted to abduct students of Molajoye Community High School on the assembly ground, but policemen attached to Rapid Response Squad (RRS), Area N Police Command, Navy and Army officials foiled the abduction. The guard and the poultry workers were said to have whisked away in a waiting boat.
The gunmen carted away about 50 live chickens and several crates of egg. The kidnappers, armed with sophisticated guns, allegedly blocked a road at Igbodu, where they engaged law enforcement officers in a gun duel.
People were said to have scampered into the bush in different directions. Many of them were also alleged to have spent the night in the bush. The Epe axis is said to have become a preferred target of kidnappers, after the Joint Task Force (JTF) comprised the Navy, Air Force, and the Army, alongside operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS), Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the police, carried out aerial bombardment of Arepo in Ogun State.

LTV

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