The Robert Opara family wednesday disowned a certain group, The La Vida Founation, which had launched a fund-raising appeal on the internet to facilitate the payment of the ransom being demanded by the abductors of the 20-year-old twins who were kidnapped along Abuja-Kogi highway last Sunday.
Clinton and Blair Roberts, who are upcoming musicians, were kidnapped last Sunday aboard Ekeson Bus service on their way to Lagos, from Abuja, to participate in a musical show, Star Voices organised by Glo X-Factor.
The kidnappers who had earlier demanded for a ransom of N6million, later raised it to N10 million.
And while the victims’ family was yet negotiating with the kidnappers, a volunteer group, La Vida Foundation, opened an online platform last Monday night, soliciting for public support demanding that 10,000 volunteers donate minimum of N1,000 each to enable it raise the required amount to bail out the twins whose stage name is DNA Twins.
But in a statement yesterday, Chief Opara noted that the group soliciting the fund for the rescue of the twins “is unknown to us and they do not have our permission to embark on such fund-raising scheme for our twin boys”, urging Nigerians to ignore the online appeal for funds..
The Opara family expressed worry that such a gesture could send a wrong signal to the kidnappers who may insist on being paid the very amount they have demanded.
“We are convinced that the step taken by the said group will further complicate the negotiation process and possibly imperil the life and health of our boys,” Opara said.
The group which opened www.savednatwins.com, noted that “A 10million Naira ransom is being demanded for their safe return. We need 10,000 well-meaning Nigerians to help #SaveDNA by making a minimum of N1000 only”, adding that, “Let’s bring our boys home! The clock is ticking. Every second counts.”
The family further appealed to friends and professional colleagues of the twins to stop calling their phones and making financial commitments especially as the handsets are now in the hands of the kidnappers.
Opara reiterated his appeal to the Nigeria police and other good Nigerians to help with any information that could lead to the eventual release of the kidnapped
Police Arrest Two as OPC, Hoodlums Clash in Lagos
The Lagos State Police Command wednesday arrested two suspects at the Ajegunle area of the state, following a clash between some hoodlums and members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC).
The clash which lasted for hours on Tuesday night, was said to have claimed one Lanre Rasheed and another yet-to-be identified person and also left several others with injuries.
Rasheed, who had gone on an errand, had walked into the clash and a stray bullet allegedly shot by the OPC killed him on the spot.
According to eyewitnesses, the clash had begun following the refusal of the OPC to share the sum of money released by a land developer.
The hoodlums popularly known in local parlance as ‘omo nile’ had approached the said developer for their share but he directed then back to the OPC.
Upon their refusal to share the largesse with the other group, a fight broke out that led to wanton destruction of properties in the area.
Asides torching some makeshift buildings and shops, both factions were said to have unleased mayhem with dangerous weapons including locally made guns, matches and axes.
As at yestersday, tentative peace was restored to the area by the deployment of policemen from the Rapid Response Squad (RRS).
Confirming the incident, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Dolapo Badmos, a Superintendent of Police, said two suspects were arrested.
She said the fight was between the area boys and the vigilante group members at Arumo Street in Ajegunle over money, adding that leader of the vigilante group allegedly collected money and refused to share it.
Badmos said it was as a result of that the hoodlums attacked the vigilantes and set their office and a nearby kiosk on fire.
She said: “In the process, the vigilantes shot and killed one person. The police went to the scene and restored calm.
“Two persons were arrested, while two live and four expended cartridges were recovered. The case is under investigation.”