Gunmen struck on Oke Ako-Irele Road in the Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State on Wednesday, abducting no fewer than four persons.

Sources said the incident, which happened around 7.30pm, involved occupants of two vehicles, a commercial car and a mini-truck, who were waylaid at a bad portion of the road.

A source at Oke Ako claimed that the driver and a passenger were abducted in the commercial vehicle, while the driver and assistant driver of the mini-truck were also taken away.

The source said, “We were in a meeting around 8pm on Wednesday when we got information that there were two vehicles with their doors opened and their headlights on on the road, but there was nobody in the vehicles.

“On getting there, we saw a commercial vehicle and a mini-truck. But before we got there, occupants of the two vehicles had been abducted by the kidnappers. The abductors have been calling since Wednesday night, requesting N20m as ransom for the victims.

“In the course of the phone calls from the den, we got to know that the victims were four and that the passengers boarded the commercial vehicle at Irele Ekiti and were heading for Ayedun Ekiti.

“The commercial 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 Rapid Response Squad, Amotekun Corps and local hunters have been combing the bush to rescue them. It is our prayer that they get them hale and hearty.”

Another source said 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.

The spokesperson for Ekamefa, Oluwafemi Abayomi, 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. There are soldiers at Ipao and Oke Ako. This kidnap incident happened around there; we need help.”

The Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti State Command, Sunday Abutu, who confirmed the kidnap, said he was still expecting the details.

Meanwhile, gunmen have abducted a Catholic Priest, Rev. Fr. Peter Amodu, in Benue State.

The priest was said to have been kidnapped on Wednesday around 5pm along Otukpo-Ugbokolo Road while on his way to celebrate mass at Okwungaga-Ughbokolo.

The Director of Communications, Otukpo Diocese, John Okpotu, confirmed the abduction of the priest.

Also, the Catholic Diocese of Otukpo, in a statement by the Diocesan Chancellor, Rev. Fr. Joseph Itodo, confirmed the incident.

The statement, dated July 6, 2022, read, “We write to notify you of the kidnap of Rev. Fr. Peter Amodu, who is working in the Catholic Diocese of Orukpo as the priest of the Holy Ghost Parish, Eke-Olengbeche.

“The sad incident occurred today, July 6, 2022, around 5pm along the Otukpo – Ugbokolo Road, Benue State, while he was on his way to celebrate the Holy Mass at Okwungaga-Ughbokolo.

“The Local Ordinary, Most Rev. Michael Ekwoyi Apochi, has called on all Christ’s faithful in the Catholic Diocese of Otukpo and beyond to earnestly pray for his quick and safe release as we intensify efforts to ensure his release.”

The state police spokesperson, SP Catherine Anene, confirmed the abduction of the priest, adding that investigation was ongoing.

By Tochi

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