Following the kidnap of a traditional head and three other people in Ondo State two days ago, the abductors demanded N50 million in exchange for the release of the victims.
The kidnappers got in touch with the victims’ families hours after the abduction, according to a family source for one of the victims.
On Thursday night, High Chief Mukaila Bello, the Oniku of Iku quarters in Ikare-Akoko, the headquarters of Akoko North East Local Government Area of the state, was kidnapped at Ago-Panu axis along Ikare-Owo highway.
Yeye Gbafinro, an All Progressives Congress (APC) leader and former candidate for the Akoko North-East seat in the state House of Assembly, Hon. Adeniran Adeyemo, and Bashiru Adekile, a community leader, were also abducted along with Bello.
The vehicle conveying the victims was forced to a halt after the driver of the vehicle, who is currently receiving medical attention in an undisclosed hospital, was shot in the head.
The victims were driving a Toyota Corolla sedan with the license plate KAK 818 AE from Akure to Ikare-Akoko when the gunmen opened fire.
The source who said that the families did not have the resources to pay for such ransom, stated that they were still holding out hope that the kidnappers would release the hostages soon.
The source also disclosed that Ikare Akoko, an ancient community, has been the scene of ardent interdenominational prayers and fasting for the safety of the victims.
Lanre Adebambo, a security expert and the Jagunmolu of Ogbagi-Akoko Group Captain, urged the Akoko community to work together and synergize in order to have formidable security measures in place.
Due to the vital placement of Akokoland as a gateway axis to the northern part of the country and the south-western states, Adebambo insisted that the action will make the Akoko highways secure for travellers and residents.