Six-year-old Bayelsa Commissioner’s Son Released after 16 Days in Captivity


Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa

Antonio, the six-year-old son of the Bayelsa State Commissioner for Water Resources, Nengi Talbot, has been freed by his abductors after 16 days in captivity.

It was unclear if any amount was paid before his release, but the police in the state claimed to have rescued the little boy without paying any ransom.

Antonio was forcibly taken away on December 22 by four gunmen, who invaded the commissioner’s residence at the New Commissioners’ Quarters in Yenagoa, the state capital.

The assailants were said to have broken into the house of the commissioner at the quarters located in Opolo and demanded money from him, but when he allegedly failed to give them money, they reportedly seized the boy and took him away to an unknown place.

However, the police said the special police crack team, Operation Puff Adder, freed the victim.

The state Commissioner of Police, Uche Anozia, who received the abductee at the command’s headquarters in Yenagoa, said the boy regained his freedom following sustained efforts of the police, who were on the trail of the kidnappers.

To avoid easy access to them, Anozia said the kidnappers were moving the victim from one creek to another.

He explained that the police adopted high level of intelligence and professionalism to free the boy unhurt.

According to him, all the suspects involved in the crime were arrested and would undergo further investigations for prosecution.

In his comments, father of the victim commended the police for their efforts, stressing that the police never demanded any money throughout the period his ordeal lasted.

The police commissioner, who said the father paid no ransom to get his son back, described the experience as traumatic.