By Onome Oghenetega

Pastor Alfred, a personal assistant to the Bishop of Flock of Christ Mission, Bishop Simeon Okah, and two others who were kidnapped on Sunday along the Ughelli-Agbarho section of the East West road in Ughelli North Local Government Area of Delta State, have been released.

WARRI TODAY gathered that the trio were abducted on Sunday night near the National Secretariat (Urhobo House) of the apex socio-cultural umbrella of Urhobo people, Urhobo Progress Union (UPU) in Uvwiamuge, Agbarho.

Multiple sources told this medium that the gunmen numbering over 20 had stormed expressway at about 7pm and operated till about 8pm before fleeing with their captives to an unknown destination.

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Bishop Okah’s PA, who is also a pastor in the church, was abducted alongside his mechanic while returning from Kwale area of the state.

Sources told our correspondent that the victims were kidnapped into a forest within Agbarho/Uvwiamuge communities by gunmen suspected to be local youths in connivance with suspected Fulani herdsmen.

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WARRI TODAY learnt on Thursday that they were released at about 10pm after paying ransoms for their freedom.

It was not clear how much ransom was paid but a source close to one of the victims said the gunmen who were claimed to be working with a strong cartel collected N500, 000 from each of their victims.

The source said, “My friend was released alongside two others including a pastor of the Flock of Christ Mission. From what he explained, they were taken into a forest in Agbarho and Uvwiamuge where the gunmen have a camp.

 “My friend’s relative paid N500, 000 to secure his released. He said they were fed with banga soup by their captors. He said their abductors are both local and Fulani herdsmen including women who supply them food. They were heavily armed.”

 While also confirming the release of the Flock of Christ Mission’s pastor, a source in the church said Bishop Okah’s PA was released alongside his mechanic he was travelling with.

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The source, however, could not confirm if ransom was paid for the duo.

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One of the released victims said the kidnappers also abducted another victim on Wednesday night along the same route.

Following the incident, the Delta State Police Command has drafted five police checkpoints along the Ughelli-Agbarho section of the road.

When contacted, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Onome Onovwakpoyeya confirmed that there was a kidnap near Uvwiamuge Junction but only one person was kidnapped.

She could not also confirm if the captive she claimed was abducted had been released on Thursday.

However, a police source at the Agbarho Police Station, confirmed the release of the three victims to WARRI TODAY.


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