A 75-year-old former Nigerian ambassador to Venezuela, Senator Felix Oboro, has been released after spending about 23 days in the captivity of his kidnappers.
Oboro, a second republic senator and pioneer Secretary to Bayelsa State government was kidnapped on Friday, September 4 at his hometown Elemebiri, Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa state.
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Though the family kept the kidnap of the elder statesman out of public view as was said to have been directed by the abductors, but it was gathered that N11 million ransom was paid before his release.
Police spokesman in the Bayelsa State Command of the Nigeria Police Force, SP Asinim Butswat confirmed the release of Senator Oboro on Sunday to Daily Trust, saying the details are still sketchy.
Oboro, who is a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress in Bayelsa State was a staunch supporter of Senator Heineken Lokpobiri during last year’s governorship primary of the party.
A family source, who declined to be name, said the gunmen, numbering about fifteen, had stormed his residence 24 hours after he arrived the village, dressed in Army uniform, shooting sporadically before whisking him away to an unknown destination on that fateful day.
He said the kidnappers, after abducting him saw a bank alert balance of over N5 million in his account and demanded a ransom payment of N50 million which was later reduced to N11 million.
He discovered that Oboro was released on Saturday to the three-man delegation of family members who travelled on boat to drop the 11million ransom demanded along the Ayama-Oporoma area of Southern Ijaw Local Government Council.
He however said that “contrary to the expectation of the family, Daddy (Felix Oboro) is strong and in a healthy state, adding that when the news of his release came, everyone was happy and jubilating.
Reacting to the development, the Spokesman for the Ijaw Youths Council worldwide, Ebilade Eerekefe condemned the abduction of the elder statesman, calling on security agencies to ensure the arrest of those involved in the dastardly act.
Ekerefe also expressed concern over the development condemning the abduction of Oboro, whom he said is a well-respected Ijaw leader and an elder statesman who has served the Ijaw Nation and Nigeria in different capacities.