Gunmen abduct 5 RCCG pastors in Ogun


The Police in Ogun State has confirmed the abduction of five persons by gunmen suspected to be kidnappers at the J3/J4 Area, Ogbere, along Benin-Ijebu-Ode-Sagamu expressway.

Confirming the incident to reporters on Friday, the state Police Public Relations Officer(PPRO), Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the abducted persons were traveling from the eastern part of the country when the commercial bus they were traveling in was blocked around 3:30 pm on Thursday by the gunmen at a location shortly after the boundary between Ogun and Ondo states.

He gave the names of the victims as Chiemela Iroha, Okoro Ohowukwe, Ndubuizi Owuabueze and Ibeleji Chidinma. He said the command could not ascertain that the abducted persons were ministers of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) who were on their way to the church’s Ministers Conference holding at the Redemption Camp in Ogun State.

The General Overseer of the RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, however on Friday morning, while giving a talk at the Redemption Camp along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, said that five ministers of the church had been abducted in Ijebu Ode axis on their way to the conference.

The General Overseer, who noted that incident of such magnitude was happening to the church for the first time, charged the congregation to pray for the release of the abductees. Adeboye said,  “As a father, how do you think I should feel to hear that five of my children have been kidnapped while on their way to attend the Ministers Conference?”.

Speaking further on the abduction, the PPRO explained that the gunmen, after forcing the vehicle with registration number  KW 230 XA, belonging to Abia Line Transport Company to a halt, whisked away four men and a woman into the forest, leaving the driver, a sick passenger and his wife in the vehicle.

Oyeyemi, however, said the Commissioner of Police in the state, Bashir Makama, had personally led the police rescue team to the location. He added that the police has been able to survey the forest and the possible hideout of the abductors aerially, with the aid of the police helicopter from the force headquarters in Abuja.

According to him, the rescue team was getting close to the location of the kidnappers, saying caution would be exercised by the team in order not to jeopardise the lives of the victims during the rescue operation.

“On the 1st of August 2019, at about 3:30 pm, the Ogun State Police Command received an information that a commercial vehicle with registration number KW 230 XA, belonging to Abia Line Transport Company was coming from the eastern part of the country heading towards Lagos.

“On getting to J3 Area of Ogbere, some hoodlums numbering about 10 suddenly came out of the forest and forcefully stopped the vehicle. And five amongst the passengers  namely Chidioze Eluwa, Chiemela  Iroha, Okoro Ohowukwe, Ndubuizi Owuabueze and Ibeleji Chidinma were abducted and taken to the forest.

“Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police, Bashir Makama is personally leading the operation to rescue the victims with operatives from the command’s tactical squads combing the entire area.

“The hideout of the hoodlums has been geo-located but our men are trying to be tactical and professional in order not to jeopardize the lives of the victims; we are making efforts to rescue.

“With the operation going on presently, we are rest assured that the victims will soon regain their freedom and the hoodlums will definitively be brought to book”. Oyeyemi said in a statement on Friday.

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