Kidnapped UNIZIK student regains�freedom after paying ransom

Kidnapped UNIZIK student regains freedom after paying ransom

Abducted student of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Francisca Chioma Mbadigha, has regained her freedom five days after she was allegedly abducted in Anambra State.

The institution's Director of Security, Ken Chukwurah, confirmed her release on Thursday, April 11, adding that she was released after paying an undisclosed sum to her captors on Wednesday, April 10.

Chioma, a student of UNIZIK's Department of Science Education, was abducted on her way to a funeral ceremony in a village outside Awka on Friday, April 5, 2024.

She was said to be on her way to the burial ceremony of her friend's father at Omasi community in Ayamelum local government area of ​​the state.

According to Punch, the kidnappers made contact with her family, informing them that she was held hostage in their captivity, while demanding N10m as ransom for her release. The ransom was later reduced to N2m.

It was gathered that Chioma's friends and schoolmates also helped raise money to pay the ransom requested by her captors.

Ken Chukwurah, who confirmed the release, said Chioma was kidnapped along with her friend in Omasiunu area of ​​the state.

He said: “Yes, she was released. The report we got from her was that she and her friend were not her targets; they simply had the misfortune of being in the area when the kidnapping operation was taking place and fell into their hands.

“The kidnappers intended to kidnap an academic doctor and a member of the same family to whom they were going to pay a condolence visit. They heard that the man was coming by public transport and set up an ambush.

“She confirmed that the kidnappers later kidnapped the academic doctor, who was their target, and from their interactions, the attackers came from outside the state. She said the kidnappers made them walk long distances in the bush and crossed them to Nsukka, Enugu State.

“When the incident was happening, we were in communication with the security agencies because initially we thought it was not true but the security agencies sent us coordinates from where they tracked them to somewhere in Enugu State.

“From interactions with her, she said that family and friends collected a certain amount of money and eventually the money was paid to the kidnappers, but we do not have the actual amount that was paid. They said the man who was her target was eventually asked to pay N20 million but negotiations were still ongoing between the man and the kidnappers before they were finally released.”


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