Police Foil Plot to Kidnap Otedola for N2bn Ransom


Ahamefula Ogbu

But for providence and dexterity of the Police, oil magnate and Chairman of Forte Oil Plc, Mr. Femi Otedola would have been kidnapped by a dare-devil kidnap cum armed robbery group led by one Ikechukwu Daniel.

Daniel, Mohammed Babuga, Boyi, Abubakar and Alayidi according to highly placed sources had planned to kidnap Otedola and demand for N2 billion out of which if they made N500 million, would have retired from robbery and kidnapping.

Ikechukwu and his three other accomplices now in police net have already owned up to the plot, explaining that but for the tight security around the oil magnate, they would have kidnapped him in Ibadan, Oyo State for the burial of a former Forte oil Director, Bolade Okun where they trailed him to his hotel but decided to wait for when his security would be more relaxed.

The gang has already admitted earlier kidnapping Senator Iyabo Anishulowo and were in the process of collecting another ransom from an undisclosed victim in Festac Town, Lagos when police with the aid of advanced gadgets, pinned down and arrested Ikechukwu.

Police sources confirmed to THISDAY that so far, four persons have been arrested while some were still being trailed.

“Yes, we have arrested four men who planned to kidnap Femi Otedola. They said they have been trailing him and even followed him to Ibadan where they discovered that the security around him was too tight to take him and called off the kidnap to await when the security would be less.

“Two of the suspects who have already owned up to the plot were arrested in Lagos while another two were arrested in Ibadan. Two have been transferred to Abuja while two of them are still in Lagos, but they have clarified how they intended to carry out the plot”, a highly placed police source said.

On how they managed to arrest the kidnappers, the source said that while the Police had some equipment purchased for them under former President Goodluck Jonathan, President Muhammadu Buhari also gave them some state-of-the-art ones with which they were breaking new grounds.

The group admitted to have carried out some high profile kidnaps across the country but had planned to retire if they got Otedola and reaped enough before their arrest was effected.

The suspects said they operated with three rifles, an AK 47, AK 49 and a pump action gun and had carried out six kidnapping raids: two in Ibadan, two in Ilorin and two in Kebbi State, and various ransoms were collected. The Kebbi State operation fetched the gang N6 million, while it got N26.1 million from the Ilorin and Ibadan cases. Otedola could not be reached for comment.