The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) says it has arrested “three notorious persons” involved in the kidnap of Friday Okeregbe, the Channels reporter who covers the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
Okeregbe was kidnapped on March 22 along Games Village in Abuja while on his way from his mechanic's workshop. He was released a few days later, but that was only after the kidnappers had contacted his family to demand a ransom of N50m.
On Sunday, the Police announced the capture of three of the kidnappers, and released details of the abduction.
“In line with the IGP’s stated commitment to curb all forms of crimes and criminality, especially incidences of kidnapping and other violent crimes in the country, Police Operatives attached to Operation Puff Adder, acting on intelligence report, on 9th April, 2019 at about 6:30am arrested three (3) notorious persons involved in the kidnap of Channels Television’s staff, Mr. Friday Okeregbe,” read a statement by Frank Mba, a Deputy Commissioner of Police and Force Public Relations Officer at the Force Headquarters.
“The suspects: Hanniel Patrick ‘m’ 29years from Akwa Ibom State, Abdulwahab Isah ‘m’ 28years and Salisu Mohammed ‘M’ 32years both from Kogi State have made useful statement to the Police.
“Meanwhile, investigations revealed that Mr. Friday Okeregbe was not originally the intended target of the vicious criminals. However, on that fateful day, 22nd March, 2019, at 07:45PM, he was kidnapped when the kidnappers saw him parking his vehicle at a location in Lugbe, Abuja. Investigations further revealed that the victim was taken to the kidnappers’ den somewhere in Karimo, Abuja and kept incommunicado afterwards.
“The Police have also recovered from the kidnappers a locally made revolver gun, three (3) live AK47 ammunitions, a battle axe, phones and masks with which they blindfold their victims. Effort is being intensified to arrest other members of the gang still at large.”
Mba conveyed the assurance of the IGP to the general public, that the Police and other security agencies “are doing everything humanly possible to tame the challenges of kidnapping and other heinous crimes across the country”.
He enjoined them to always avail the Police of useful information that will help in realising these objectives.