The Cross River state Police Command has confirmed the rescue of a 28-year-old taxi driver, Mr Joseph David, from his abductors along Esuk Mba in the Akpabuyo Local Government Area of the state.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, SP Irene Ugbo, said the victim’s vehicle was also recovered in the course of the operation inside the forest of Esuk Mba by the Anti Cultism and Kidnapping Squad, a tactical Unit of the Command, in collaboration with Operation Akpakwu Army detachment.
Recounting his experience, the driver said that he was hired to take a passenger to Esuk Mba to carry palm oil at a mill, without knowing that it was a setup.
“I was actually set up with the pretence of going to carry Oil Palm at Esuk Mba by the same set of people who abducted me. On our way to Esuk Mba to carry the alleged product, the man who hired me suddenly asked me to stop at a spot. All of a sudden, two young men came out from a nearby bush with guns and marched me into a speed boat and took me into the creeks.
“They left the person, who hired me from Calabar, with my vehicle and the car didn’t start. In the process, some youths from the area suspected something was wrong. When he was accosted, he took off, that was when a call was placed to the tactical unit of Anti Kidnapping Squad. I believe he gave his accomplices a tip-off because they were receiving calls and they beat me up badly with a cutlass.
“They dropped me off at Anantigha axis before anti-Kidnapping and Operation Akpakwu came to my rescue.”
The taxi driver, however, said he would identify the kidnappers when apprehended.
Similarly, a carpenter, identified as Otobong, has regained freedom from his abductors after five days in captivity
Otobong said he was left off the hook after he parted with the N37,000 found on him by his abductors, who had tricked him under the guise of giving him a job.
“They called me with a number I don’t have and asked me to meet them at WAPI junction where they have a job for me at the State Housing Estate. But before leaving, I called my wife to inform her, unfortunately, her phone line didn’t connect, so I had to inform my daughter about my movement instead.
“However, on my way, I received another call from the same person that I should rather stop at the Stadium and that they will pick me up from there, which they did. They were three in the car, a Toyota Camry since I didn’t suspect any foul play, so I joined them.
“It was while they were driving me to their destination along the highway that I lost consciousness. I didn’t know where I was anymore. They kept me in a room for five days, blindfolded and without food for days. Even the N37,000 I had with me to buy materials for another customer was collected.
“When they checked my account balance they knew I was the wrong target because I didn’t have a Kobo on it. They questioned me if I had money. I told them I’m just a poor carpenter,” he explained.
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