Laleye Dipo in Minna
Kidnappers were reported to have given N10, 000 to their victims to enable them buy simple footwear (slippers) after they released them.
The six victims who were kidnapped last Thursday were taken into the Kogi State forest barefooted.
It was learnt that five days after the incident, the relations of the victims in Avu community in Abugi area of Lapai Local Government Area of Niger State were able to raise and pay the N1.7million ransom demanded by the bandits.
It was from this amount that the bandits gave out N10, 000 to their victims to buy the footwear.
One of the freed victim, simply called Abdulsalami, said the bandits, after collecting the N.17million ransom, escorted them to a few meters to their village where they were released at about 1 a.m. yesterday.
Narrating their ordeal in the hands of the bandits, Abdulsalam told family members that they trekked for several hours before arriving at the hideout of the bandits-a cave in Kogi State.
“We trekked several kilometres and crossed the river Gurara into Kogi State,” the freed victim narrated, adding that they were kept in the cave which was well guarded to avoid any escape.
A community leader, Musa Idris, confirmed the release of the villagers and payment of the ransom.
Last Thursday, bandits raided Avu community in Lapai LGA, the first of such incident in the area.
It was gathered that the bandits in their large numbers stormed the community around 1a.m. and started shooting sporadically thereby causing confusion in the village.
In the confusion, six villagers, all male, were kidnapped and taken into the cave in Kogi State.