Mr Chike Okoli, former commissioner for science and technology during the former Governor Peter Obi’s administration, was kidnapped by heavily armed gunmen from Agulu, in Anambra State on Saturday, May 17, 2014.
According to an anonymous family member, the hoodlums had earlier requested a ransom of N50 million but later reduced it to N16 million for his release.
Sun News reports:
Daily Sun gathered that the former commissioner was intercepted by gunmen that operated in a black Sports Utility Vehicle, (SUV) on Saturday, at Agulu on his way to his hometown, Nanka, a neighbouring community in Orumba South Local Government Area of the state.
A family source who pleaded anonymity said that the kidnappers have opened negotiation with the family, adding that they insisted on N16 million as ransom. He said that the gunmen had earlier demanded for N50 million.
The source also disclosed that the kidnappers warned the family against playing funny game and warned that the police should not be involved in the business if they wanted their brother back alive.
In a related development, prompt intervention of policemen foiled another kidnap attempt on an Onitsha-based businessman who was whisked away by gunmen from his shop.
It was gathered that the gunmen had trailed the man to his shop on Awka Road and ordered him into their Honda Accord car, leaving behind his Sports Utility Vehicle, (SUV) still steaming, without firing any shot.
However, luck ran out on the kidnappers as they approached a police checkpoint on their way towards Otuocha, when the victim screamed from the car, which made the police to stop the vehicle and three men in the car ran into the bush. The policemen rescued the victim and recovered three AK47 rifles and some live ammunition from the vehicle.
The State Police Public Relations Officer, (PPRO), Mr. Emeka Chukwuemeka said efforts were ongoing to arrest the fleeing members of the gang.