Kidnapped Ekiti Pupils Regain Freedom, Driver Killed

Kidnapped Ekiti Pupils Regain Freedom, Driver Killed

* As Oyebanji Lauds Tinubu, security agencies 

Gbenga Sodeinde in Ado Ekiti 

The Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Biodun Oyebanji, has commended President Bola Tinubu, the security agencies and Ekitikete for their support which led to the timely release of the kidnapped pupils of Apostolic Faith Nursery and Primary school, Emure Ekiti. 

The pupils and their teachers were released Sunday, February 4th, and brought to the Elemure’s palace around 4am. 

However, the driver of the school bus was reported killed in the custody of the kidnappers. 

The governor, while congratulating the children and their families, expressed his profound appreciation to President Tinubu for giving specific directives that put the search and rescue mission on top gear.    

He also thanked the security agencies for their collaborative efforts during the search for the pupils, just as he extended appreciation to Ekitikete home and abroad for their support during the security situation experienced last week. 

Noting the traumatic experience of the children in the kidnappers’ den, Oyebanji directed the Commissioner for Health and Human Services, Dr Oyebanji Filani, to take the children to the state Teaching Hospital, Ado Ekiti for proper medical treatment and post trauma therapy. 

The governor, who kept vigil with the Senate Leader, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, till 3.00am to ensure the release of the children, acknowledged the solidarity shown by his colleague governors, former governors of the state, as well as religious leaders and traditional rulers. 

He also lauded members of the Ekiti State Caucus in the National Assembly and members of the state House of Assembly for their support. “And more importantly, we thank God for everything,” the governor said. 

Oyebanji also restated the determination of his administration to stamp out crime and criminality from the state by making the environment unbearable for criminals operating under whatever guise.

Similarly, the governor said killers of the two Ekiti obas would be fished out and made to face the maximum weight of the law. 

A statement by the Special Adviser (Media) to the Governor, Yinka Oyebode, urged the people of the state to remain vigilant and report any suspicious movement in their communities to the authorities.

Meanwhile, the Ekiti State Police Command has said the freedom regained by the kidnapped school children was only made possible through the combined efforts of the police and other security agencies including the Amotekun Corps, local vigilantes and hunters, as well as the family members and the support from the federal and state governments.

A statement signed by the Police PRO, Sunday Abutu, however sympathised with the family of the driver who was suspected to have been killed by the abductors while in hostage.

The command vowed to continue with the operation and investigation until the perpetrators are arrested and made to face the full wrath of the law.

Similarly, the rescued victims have been handed over to the state government for medical examination and attention.

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