Clement Adeyi, Osogbo
The professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology at Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife, Osun State, Professor Olayinka Adegbehingbe, who was kidnapped on Sunday night by gunmen, has regained his freedom.
Adegbehingbe, however, disclosed that N5.045 million was paid to secure his release. He made the disclosure on Tuesday at his campus residence at OAU.
The surgeon, who said he was hale and healthy, attributed his release to the act of God.
According to him, the kidnappers had earlier demanded N30 million but later settled for N5.045 million after intense negotiation.
He condemned the level of insecurity across the country, saying the majority of the youths were jobless and had now resorted to crime.
“The Federal government needs to invest more in security. We need to know the identity of people coming in and going out of the town, state and the country at large.
“The people who abducted me were Fulani herdsmen and they had four guns and multiple rounds of ammunition as well as different dangerous weapons,” he said.
He called for community policing as well as provision of employment for the youths.
“Idle hands are the devil’s workshop,” he said.
“I also thank the security operatives, the entire OAU and OAUTHC communities, our families, church members and all other well-wishers for their prayers and other support rendered,’’ he added.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Osun State police command, Folashade Odoro, told our correspondent on Tuesday that Adegbehingbe was released by his abductors on Monday night.
She said that the professor returned home in good health and had reunited with his family.
“He returned home in good health, safe and sound and has reunited with his family,” Odoro disclosed.
Odoro added that Adegbehingbe’s release was secured by a crack team of policemen through professionalism.
She added that no arrest had been made so far, but the police were still on the trail of the abductors to ensure their arrest.
“We are still working to get them apprehended,” Odoro said.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the university, Abiodun Olarewaju, also disclosed that the professor had returned home hail and hearty.
He commended the police for their prompt action and professionalism in securing his release.
According to him, the university management had expressed “appreciation to the public for their support, love and concerns and also thank the officers and men of the Osun State command of the Nigeria Police, particularly the Police Commissioner, for their prompt response and professionalism.”
Adegbehingbe was kidnapped last Sunday night between Ajesire and Ikire towns along Ife/Ibadan Expressway in the company with his wife while travelling from Lagos to Ile-Ife.
Professor Oluwole Komolafe, the President of the Nigeria Medical Association in Osun, expressed gratitude to God for the release of Adegbehingbe.
“The Federal government should look into the issue of security across the country so that citizens would have rest of mind,’’ he said.
Professor Rasaq Adebayo, another colleague of Adegbehingbe and consultant cardiologist at OAU Teaching Hospital Complex, attributed the release to God’s intervention.
“We thank God for the release of our colleague for we cannot afford to miss an intelligent, competent and qualified surgeon like him,” he stated.