My kidnappers are graduates who have been on the street and could not get jobs” – Bamigbetan - Gragrah News!
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My kidnappers are graduates who have been on the street and could not get jobs” – Bamigbetan

Written By Joseph Y. Musa on Monday, April 22, 2013 | 4/22/2013 07:14:00 pm

Hon. Kehinde Bamigbetan, Chairman of Ejigbo Local Council Development Authority, Lagos
State, who was released by his captors on Saturday said he was tortured by his kidnappers when he told them he did not have the $1 million they demanded as ransom.

Bamigbetan, narrated his ordeal in the hands of his captors on Sunday at his residence, Ona Iwa Mimo Street, Ejigbo, Lagos.

He confirmed that he had the premonition of his kidnap.

He told a large crowd that gathered at his home to celebrate with him, that he could not eat anything for the first few days with his kidnappers as they refused to give him anything to eat.

In his words, “I woke up on Monday morning with a strong premonition that something was going to happen. I couldn’t place how it would happen or why or when. I was already tensed.

“That day, I didn’t leave home until 2pm because I was wondering whether I should step out or not, considering my strong premonition.

“I had two events: I had a Community Development Association tour to give annual reports on how far we have gone with our campaign promises and then get their feedback. There was also a meeting with the Chairmen of CDAs. We needed to sensitize them on the importance of our Annual Desilting Programme and the process of it.

“It was for those two reasons that I had to be in the council. I was there, and the two events held. By the time we finished, it was about 7pm. I realized that I had two appointments on the Island.

“I went for the assignments and by 9pm, I had finished my assignments. But because of that fear, I decided that I should change my route. I usually come in through Western Avenue, Lawanson and then through Surulere, but this time
I chose to come in through Ikotun.

“As I was entering my street, I was still thinking that may be I was making too much out of nothing. Suddenly, this vehicle came and double crossed
us. My first reaction was for us (I and my driver) to reverse, but they came out and started shooting at the vehicle.

“The vehicle got stuck while we tried to escape. They caught up with me. They asked me why we were running, that did I want to kill myself. That showed that they were not after my life. I said I was afraid.

“So, they ordered me into the vehicle and I entered. They put my face down and then for about four hours, we kept driving. My ears were picking the waves of the tyres and at some point, we got to a place. They then blindfolded me and led me into a room, I felt my hands on the carpet. They asked me not to open my eyes and then they tightened the folds so I couldn’t even raise my eye
lids. I was there and they started asking me questions.

“I realized that they had taken my laptop and everything I had in the car and were going through it. They started asking me questions and I told them I am a journalist and that I work for the government.
“And then, all of a sudden, someone asked if I could pay N15 million, I said I don’t know but said I have a friend who could help if he knows I’m in this condition.

“I gave them the name of the friend. They said they will explore the option.

“They came back and said they were talking with my friend and they were negotiating.

When Hon. Bamigbetan was asked about the name of his friend, he simply replied by saying, “I can’t give you people his name though.

He however said his abductors sent a spy to his office to know what people were saying about him.

According to him, “They sent one of their own to go to my LCDA and see what people were saying about me. They said a lot of people said I was a good man
and then when the newspapers started writing the reports, they said everyone was talking so well of me and I must be a good man.

“From the point of visiting the LCDA, their orientation changed about me. They said I was a nice man and they won’t let me die but ensure I was released on time.

“They started asking me what I was going to eat,forcing me to eat water melon,” Bamigbetan concluded.

Meanwhile, the founder of the Oodua Peoples’ Congress, Dr. Frederick Fasehun, had expressed his happiness over the release of the council boss.
He noted that OPC took interest in Bamgbetan’s case because he is a Yoruba man.

Fasehun emphasised that one of the principles of the OPC is to defend Yoruba interest.

He said, “We did not deviate from
this principle during his kidnap, we don’t usually stand on rooftop to shout about
our victories.

“I must, however, tell you that it was not only OPC that contributed to his safe release. Other people contributed: Members of the community contributed and even security operatives.

He however gave thanks to God for the safe release of Bamigbetan.
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