From Tony John, Port Harcourt
The 6 Division of the Nigerian Army has announced the rescue 10 foreigners abducted in Gabon, in Tombia, a creek in Bille waterways in Degema Rivers State, with a ransom of $300,000 paid for their release.
The victims, among whom were six Chinese, three Indonesians and a Gabonese national along with four Nigerians, said to have facilitated their release, were rescued early morning Saturday by men of the 29 Battalion (under the 6 Division) assisted by local vigilantes.
Commanding Officer, 29 Battalion, Lt-Col Mohammed Yahaya, gave preliminary findings at the 6 Division, Nigerian Army, Bori Camp, Port Harcourt, where he handed over the rescued foreigners and the Nigerian negotiators of their ransom and release to men of the Department of State Security (DSS) for further investigations on the incident.
‘From preliminarily findings, they were kidnapped off the coast of Gabon, 7 February and brought into Nigerian creeks. A ransom of $300,000 was paid to secure their release before we came in,’ Yahaya sstated.
‘After that settlement, as they were about bringing them out of the creeks, they had issues that made the even susceptible to kidnapping again.
‘So, men of the 29 Battalion, under the 6 Division, in conjunction with local vigilantes launched that operation and were able to rescue them.
‘They have a trolley, Socipeg, registered in Gabon. It was in course of their fishing activities that they were kidnapped. DSS are expected to do further investigations to unravel the circumstance and enable us go after the abductors,’ the statement concluded.