18 abducted passengers travelling along Isua Akoko – Abuja highway, in Ondo state, have been rescued by the joint security agencies in the state.
The Ondo state commander of the security outfit, codenamed Amotekun, Chief Adetunji Adeleye,, said in Akure, that the victims have rejoined their families.
Adeleye said, “On the June 6, we got a distress call that an 18-seater passengers bus with number plate EKP263 LG coming from Kogi State towards Ondo State was waylaid by men suspected to be kidnappers along Eti-Osa near Isua.
“Our men, both the tactical team from the headquarters and the Isua local government coordinator moved immediately to the scene and started a manhunt for the victim.
” Two female victims and the conductor were left behind when they were pursued
“Men of the Nigeria Army and the Police in a joint effort with the local hunters pursued them over the night.
“By 6am the following morning, 13 others were rescued in the thick forest between Kogi and Ondo states boundary through the combined efforts of the men of the Ondo State Security Network Agency, Amotekun, the Nigeria Police and officers and men of 32 Artillery brigade who joined in the operation.
“The 18 rescued have since been profiled and joined their families.”
Meanwhile, speaking on the rescue mission the state police command spokesperson, Funmi Odunlami, said that one of the suspected kidnappers was killed in a gun duel.
Odunlami said that the traveller’s bus was waylaid by the gunmen and dragged out of the bus and marched into the forest.
“It was like a movie when 13 passengers, Abuja bound bus was waylaid by some unknown gunmen at Isua, the headquarters of Akoko South East Local Government and they marched them to the forest leaving only three of the passengers.”
The victims, the source said were rescued at Ikakumo, which is a distance of almost 20 kilometres from where they were kidnapped
” The joint security agents immediately embarked on combing the forest and their efforts yielded fruitful results.
Odunlami said one of the suspected kidnappers was shot dead during a gun battle.