Three kidnap suspects in custody at the Lagos State Police Command have confessed to abducting two poultry farms owners at Egan, Itoki area of Ikorodu, on July 17, 2016.
The suspects, numbering 15, had stormed the area in three boats, abducting the owners – Alhaji Oyebanji Wasiu and Alhaji Isiaka Owolabi along with the manager of the two farms, Abiodun Adeniyi, 43.
The victims were taken deep into the creek where they were instructed to contact their families, who reportedly put together the sum of N22m as ransom which they dropped at a particular location as instructed by the kidnappers.
Armed with three AK47 and rifles, one pump-action rifle, nine magazines and 270 rounds of live ammunition, they killed Adeniyi but investigations later revealed that there was a deep-seated vengeance involved, hence, the murder.
The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, on Friday, told the Punch that investigation was still ongoing to arrest other members of the gang, adding that the suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigations were complete.
Meanwhile, the suspects have narrated the event that led to the kidnapping and the murder.
One of the suspects, Idowu Dauwujoh, 24, confessed to being the gang’s inside man.
He said, “When I got a job as a worker on the farms, I was employed along with three other friends, Kekeminiwei, Afro and Odesebra, all Ijaw natives, but few months after we were employed, Kekeminiwei, Afro and Odesebra were sacked.
“The allegations were that they were stealing from the farms. Then, Afro was dating a lady who also worked on the farms. It became an issue between him and the manager of the farms (Adeniyi) and the man told him to leave.
“I was the only one remaining in the farms, but I was always in touch with the other boys.
“One day, they called me and said anytime the owners of the farms were around, I should let them know. They told me they were planning to kidnap them and that I should act as if I knew nothing.
“Few days before July 17, 2016, I called my friends to inform them that my bosses would be around in a few days, so as soon as they – (Wasiu and Owolabi) arrived their farms on Wednesday, July 17, I gave my friends the signal and they moved in.
“When they kidnapped my bosses including the manager, I had no idea where they were taking them to. But I fled the farms to Delta State,” Dauwujoh added.
Another suspect, 26-year-old Priye Idoro, said he took part in the kidnapping and was actually the cook in the camp where they kept their victims.
Idoro said, “Before that day, I was not a kidnapper. All I was doing was bursting pipelines to steal crude oil at Igbo Olomu, Ikorodu, Lagos.
“One day, one of my bosses, who employed me as a pipeline vandal, informed me of the kidnap plan and I willingly went along. We arrived at the area before the kidnapping day and stayed in the forest for three days.
“As soon as we got the signal, we moved in and took the men.
“The first day we brought the men to the creek, I was told to go and buy foodstuff by nightfall. I bought fish, soup ingredients and garri.
“I was feeding them eba most of the time. Cooking was all I was doing, my bosses were the ones doing the negotiation. When the ransom was paid, they told me it was N20m. They brought the money in a carton and two ‘Ghana-Must-Go’ bags.
“They gave me N500,000. I treated the men well. Before they released them, they were even praying for me that I would do something great with the money I got.
“One evening, I went to buy food and when I got back, they had released them. I asked about the manager too and one of the men said he had killed him because he was the one who sent him away from the farm, where he was working before. They did not tell me what they did with his body,” Idoro said, pleading for mercy.