The unknown gunmen, who kidnapped the Benue Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Mathew Abo, have allegedly demanded a ransom of N60 million from his family.
A family source told newsmen on Friday in Makurdi that the abductors made the demand in a phone call to a member of the family on Friday.
Further reports that according to the source, the recipient of the call, name withheld for security reasons, said the “kidnappers have resorted to torturing the commissioner to press home for their demand”.
The source said they called and placed their phone on loud speaker so that the beating of the commissioner and his cries for help could be heard.
Several gunmen stormed the commissioner’s residence in Zaki-Biam in Ukum LGA and kidnapped him on 24th Sept. around 8pm.
Eyewitnesses said the kidnappers came on four motorcycles, ordered everyone in the house, including the the Commissioner’s wife and children, to lie face down before they took away the victim.
The witnesses said the abductors compelled the commissioner to sit behind the rider of one of the motorcycles and sped away.
Gov Hyacinth Alia, in his reaction, has strongly condemned the abduction and directed security operatives to ensure the safe release of his Commissioner.
However, when asked if the kidnappers have made contact with either the family or government, the State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Sewuese Anene, simply said “investigation is ongoing”.