From Judex Okoro, Calabar
Abductors of Onyebuchi Okwueze, son of the Dean of Graduate School of the University of Calabar, (UNICAL)have demanded N10 million for his release.
Onyebuchi, 24, a first year student of the department of Banking and Finance, was last Wednesday whisked away by gunmen numbering about eight.
He was said to be alone in their flat when the kidnappers stormed the institution’s staff quarters within the campus about 8:00pm.
Last June, two staff of the institution, Mrs Ndifon and Dr. David Ini Ama, a nurse and a medical doctor respectively with the varsity’s teaching hospital (UCTH), as well as the little daughter of Mrs Ndifon were kidnapped by gunmen.
Investigation by Daily Sunrevealed that yesterday night, the abductors broke their weeklong silence and demanded N10 million as ransom before they can release the only son to the parents.
Though, Prof. Okwueze could not be reached for comments, family sources confirmed that the abductors have been making frantic calls for the ransom just as the family had told them that they cannot afford such money.
The source said after series of calls, the hoodlums decided to reduce the amount to N7 millon. But the Dean still insisted that the amount was high as he has nowhere to run to.
He, therefore, appealed to them to release his only son as he has not committed any offence.
Further investigation revealed that security has been beefed up as the 24-hour pin-down patrol by a joint team of the Army and the Navy of the staff headquarters has commenced.
When Daily Sun visited the quarters, there was presence of heavy security operatives patrolling the waterfront area and other vulnerable spots in and around the university while the police post has been fortified.
Even as there is tight security, residents at the quarters have taken extra measures by ensuring that their gates are permanently locked while those without protectors have made arrangements to fix them up.
Speaking with our reporter, one of the students, Miss Angela, who resides within the staff quarters, said: “At least, security is better than before and we are happy. But we still lock ourselves indoors now for fear of possible attack. And we call on the kidnappers to release our neighbour’s son, Onybuchi, to us.”