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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Police didn’t play any role in my freedom from kidnappers’ den -Ex-Imo traditional council chairman, Ohiri

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Freed Traditional Ruler of Orodo Autonomous Community in Mbaitoli LGA of Imo, His Royal Majesty, Eze Samuel Agunwa Ohiri, has dismissed Imo police claims to have fostered his release from his abductors.

The monarch who was abducted recently by unidentified gunmen at his palace said his release was by divine mercy of God and his constant prayers, support for his people and life of open-mindedness he had built over the years with his people.

Although, he disclosed his people paid huge ransom, his freedom from the kidnappers’ den remained a superlative divine mercy of God.

Eze Ohiri, in exclusive interview with some Imo journalists on Thursday, said that the kidnap syndicates were particularly angry with both the traditional rulers and politicians given the way and manner they talked about them.

Hear him, “contrary to what the police said about my release, there is no hiding the fact that the state police never played any role. I actually do not want to speak on this but I am doing it just to set the record straight. I am not disputing the fact that the police may have made effort towards my release but I am talking what I know. It was my relationship with God and the help from my family people that made it possible. Although, that was after we paid ransom.

“I came back home to celebrate the Christmas and new year with my people in Obi-orodo. Then on the 6th of January, I decided to visit one of my old boys and senior students of Emmanuel College Secondary School in those days.

But when I was coming back after visiting my friend around 8:30pm, I met able-bodied men in front of my palace gate who came in their own vehicle.

They double-crossed me and forced me into their vehicle. My cousin brother smartly introduced himself as my driver and they set him free. They now blind-folded me and zoomed off to an unknown destination.

“I was first kept in an uncompleted building before I was transferred to another location. Within twelve days I spent in their den, I saw hell.

It looked so much as if they have some scores to settle with the traditional rulers and politicians , but luckily for me, their leader came out and ordered them not tp torture me, that i am a decent man.

At that int, negotiation began between my people and the kidnappers which eventually resulted to setting me free after we paid the first and second ransom.

“They later took me and another victim to Eziama Obiato, a community in Mbaitoli LGA along Owerri-Onitcha expressway at night after I spent twelve days in their dungeon. And from there I found my way back to Owerri at Asumpta Cathedral roundabout where my people came and conveyed me back to my palace.”

He added that he never wished anyone to pass through such dehumanization he had to face in the hands of the kidnappers.

He further regretted that the kidnappers were very particular about the traditional rulers and politicians and didn’t hide their heavily bitterness against them.

Concludin, he said, “I appeal to all Ezes of Imo and Southeast at large not to deviate from the traditional norms and values of Ndigbo as custodians of the tradition.”

The police in Imo state, upon the release of the monarch after twelve days, had claimed to have engaged the kidnappers at a forest by the operatives of the Anti-Kidnapping Unit and arrested one of the syndicates while others fled away.

The command said through its Spokesman, Henry Okoye, “recall the Command has been working assiduously in synergy with other security agencies towards ensuring that Eze OHIRI is released and some arrest have been made. To the glory of God, the kidnapped Traditional Ruler has been released, after a hot chased on his abductors at the forest by operatives of the Command’s Anti kidnapping unit.

“The Command will continue to work towards stamping out all forms of violent crimes in the State.”

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