Kidnapped NTA reporter kept in creeks, paid N1m ransom

A nursing mother and broadcaster with the Nigerian Television Authority, NTA, Akure, Ondo State, Mrs Olubunmi Oke, who was kidnapped last Thursday has been released by her abductors.

This, however, was possible after her family coughed out N1 million ransom to the kidnappers who dropped her along the Benin Ore Expressway at about 11 p.m, Saturday.

Mrs Olubunmi Oke
Bunmi, as she is fondly called by her colleagues, has since re-united with her banker husband and six-month-old baby girl.

She has, however, been barred from granting interviews on her ordeal in the hands of her captors.

But findings by Vanguard revealed that she was driven to one of the Niger Delta states and kept in the creeks by her kidnappers.

Her friends who volunteered information said she was not maltreated by the kidnappers who also sympathised with her that she is a nursing mother.

Investigations had it that the kidnappers initially requested N30 million as ransom but later went down to N6 million and eventually settled for N1 million.

Vanguard gathered that they settled for N1 million following appeals from the family of the nursing mother that the baby had been deprived of breast feeding for three days.

It was learnt that during the negotiation, the kidnappers heard the cry of the baby and were moved.

The kidnappers, according to investigation, asked the husband of the journalist to bring the ransom to Owo and when he got there, he was asked to return to Akure.

The husband was later called about 30minutes after to go to Ore where they said he would find his wife.

Some security personnel and the husband later went for her only to be told by Bunmi that she was dropped in the bush and was helped by a truck driver to the expressway.

Her friend said that Bunmi told them the kidnappers used her phone all through the negotiation and that they slapped her when her husband was negotiating the ransom downwards.

According to them, the kidnappers claimed that she was taken to DeltaState and that when the ransom could not be raised, they asked her to contact the national body of the Nigeria Union of Journalists,NUJ, and the state government to augment whatever the family was able to raise.

In desperation, they equally called Bunmi’s mother to contribute to the safety of her daughter if she didn’t want her dead.

Contacted, the Police image maker, Wole Ogodo, confirmed the release of the broadcaster but said no arrest had been made, adding that he was not aware that any ransom was paid by the family of Bunmi.

He assured that the police were on the trail of the kidnappers and would soon apprehend them.

It would be recalled that four gunmen kidnapped Bunmi while coming from work at about 9.30p.m. around Oba Ile area of Akure metropolis.


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