Gunmen kidnap LG clerk, driver, demand N20m ransom

There was unease at the Ikeja Local Government Secretariat, Lagos State, on Wednesday after the clerk of the council, Shamsideen Omotayo, and his driver were abducted by gunmen.

The duo were reportedly waylaid in Imota, Ikorodu, while the driver was taking him to the office in his car.

It was learnt that the gunmen had established contact with the Head of Administration of the council, Mrs. Mosunmola Otaiku-Okoka, demanding N20m ransom for their release.

A worker at the Ikeja council secretariat, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the incident had affected the smooth operation of the council.

He said, “The incident actually happened yesterday morning (Tuesday) while he was coming to the office in his official car. The car was driven by his driver.

“The clerk lives around Imota, but I don’t really know the point where they were kidnapped. Everybody is worried. The vehicle has not been recovered. The police and the head of administration are already aware.”

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The Head of Information Unit, Ikeja LGA, Mr. Bello-Onilegbale, in a statement on Wednesday, confirmed the incident, adding that the kidnappers had demanded N20m as ransom.

He said, “This is to inform the public of the abduction of the Ikeja Local Government Clerk, Mr. Omotayo Shamsideen, by some notorious kidnappers in the early hours of Tuesday, August 1, 2017, on his way to work.

“He has, however, been allowed to speak with his immediate boss. The kidnappers demanded N20m as ransom.”

The Public Affairs Officer, Lagos State Neighbourhood Safety Corps, Afolabi Olawale, said the corps was working with other security agencies to rescue the victims.

“Efforts are ongoing by concerned security agencies to rescue them,” he said.

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole, said a case of abduction, not kidnap, was reported to the police, adding that investigation had commenced.

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He said, “A case of abduction was reported and action is being taken. The man was on his way to work. We want to assume that he was in the car with his driver and we are investigating to know where the incident happened; whether he was picked up or he just disappeared.”

The Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde could not be reached for comment. Calls made to his line went unanswered and he had yet to reply to a text message sent to him as of press time.

The incident happened barely four days after six kidnapped pupils of the Lagos State Model College, Epe, were released.

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