The Kidnappers of Ubulu-Uku monarch, Akaeze Ofulue III, allegedly abandoned N100m ransom said to have been paid by family members to free the monarch.
Residents of Ubulu-Uku community, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the kidnappers had demanded N100m ransom two days after the monarch was kidnapped, and had threatened to commit an abominable act if the money was not paid within 24 hours of their contact.
The residents added that the kidnappers, however, abandoned the money because they were out to kill the monarch.
They said Ubulu-Uku community might not recover from the shock of the “dastardly killing of our monarch in the next few years, even if the perpetrators of the evil act are uncovered.”
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr. Aikali Usman, said, “We are working hard to fish out the killers of the monarch and we will not relent until they are brought to book.
“The kidnapers did not take the N100m ransom; they abandoned it in the bush and the family has taken it back.”
PUNCH Metro gathered that the kidnappers allegedly disguised as Fulani herdsmen, while an insider, believed to be an indigene of the community, was said to have aided them.
Ofulue III, a lawyer and a member of the Deeper Life Christian Ministry, was driving with a young pastor of the church, who also served as one of his aides, in a Landcruiser on Obior/Igbodo Road when the abductors struck at a bad portion of the road.
Sources said the pastor, who was kidnapped with the monarch, managed to escape from the kidnappers’ den a day after their abduction.
A resident, who did not want his name in print, said the pastor on his arrival in the community broke the news. He added that by the time the villagers mobilised to rescue the king, he had been taken away by his abductors.
Our correspondent, who visited the community on Sunday, learnt that the palace chiefs and some highly placed community leaders were in a close-door meeting, while efforts to seek comment of one of the chiefs failed.
However, an indigene, privileged to be at the meeting, said, “We are making frantic efforts to invite witch doctors to uncover those behind the killing of our monarch, we have resolved to fish out his killers. We know there are insiders involved in the kidnap, hence the reason they abandoned the N100m ransom.”
Mr. Patrick Odum, a native of the community, said, “The kidnappers abandoned the N100m. I learnt that the money was abandoned in a sack and no kobo was removed.”
Meanwhile, the Aniocha South Council-of-Obis has condemned the killing, urging security agents to fish out the perpetrators and ensure that they are brought to justice.
The Secretary of Aniocha South Council-of-Obis, Emmanuel Ofor, who spoke with our correspondent on the telephone on Sunday, described the act as shocking, strange and barbaric.
He added that nothing would pacify the Obis in the locality other than the eventual arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators.
He said a meeting of all the Obis in Aniocha South had been slated for Monday (today), after which they would come out with their position on the matter.