Kidnapping for ransom has arrived even the remotest part of Benue State in central Nigeria where a 60 year old woman is now firmly in the hands of some unknown gun men demanding for N15million for her release. It all took place about 10:30pm last Saturday night when some unidentified gunmen invaded the sleepy village of Opialu in Edumoga District of Okpokwu Local Government Area and kidnapped the mother of an aspirant for the position of the Benue State House of Assembly in the forth coming 2019 general election. The gunmen who shot sporadically into the air during the operation came on a motorbike. The kidnappers contacted Hon. Richard Agbo Ikwuta, the legislator-the aspirant the next day and demanded a ransom of N15million naira.
The woman, Mrs Monica Agbo who is in her late fifties to early sixties is a poor farmer but her son, the aspirant and a retired police Sergeant, is seen as relatively well to do. The mood in the village is still one of shock. The incident has been reported to the police since the night it happened. The Police has been to Opialu the next morning and they did not take statements, it was learnt.
A variant of a middle-woman for the chief commodity in the area which is garri has been quoted as saying that the kidnapped woman had come to her house about 6pm on the day she was kidnapped and asked her to come and measure the garri the victim had fried.
There is considerable concern with safety of the woman, more so that nothing of this sort has ever occurred in the village before although there has been a spate of kidnappings in the area in recent times. Some members of her age grade meeting have been sighted weeping openly while prayers were offered for her safe release at the St. Theresa Catholic Church, Opialu where she worships. Intervention is, however, understanding that the goodwill for her safety could turn quickly into anger against her son who brought men of the local vigilante who carrying out house to house search for the suspected ‘bad boys’. As at the time of filling this report, the suspected kidnappers are understood to have reduced their price to N6million.