Gunmen have abducted 78-year-old Patimi Akene, the mother of the Bayelsa State Commissioner for Lands and Survey,Bayelsa State Commissioner for Lands and Survey
The abduction of Patimi came 18 days after Ogboro Orumo, 90-year-old mother-in-law of Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Tombowei Benson, was kidnapped.
Orumo’s whereabouts had remained unknown since May 30 when her abductors whisked her away from her residence in Krokorosei in the same Southern Ijaw Local Government Area.
Sources said Patimi was kidnapped on Saturday by six gunmen at Ofoinbiri community.
It was learnt that the commissioner’s mother and one of her granddaughters were returning home from a church vigil in the community at about 1am on Saturday when the hoodlums swooped on her.
They were said to have sped away with the victim into the creeks in a speed boat they operated.
The commissioner, who confirmed his mother’s abduction, said the gunmen took her away without firing a gunshot.
Akene said his mother’s assailants covered her mouth with a handkerchief when she screamed for help, threatening to kill her and the granddaughter if they did not keep quiet.
The commissioner said, “My mother was in company with one of her granddaughters when the armed men arrived at about 12 am and took her away.
“Preliminary investigation showed that the gunmen know her and have been studying her.”
He said the gunmen established contact with him on Sunday evening and demanded his resignation from the cabinet of Governor Seriake Dickson as ransom.
Akene added, “Someone that I suspected to be one of the kidnappers called me and said they don’t need my money. But that I should ‘withdraw’ from the present administration as commissioner. I think what they are demanding is for me to resign my appointment.
“My brother, I think the people interested in my job as commissioner in the state are the ones behind the abduction of my mother.”
When contacted, Commissioner of Police, Hilary Opara, confirmed the incident.
Opara said the police had swung into action with a view to rescuing Patimi and arresting the culprits.
“We will continue to depend on information. We are soliciting more information. I thank the people of Bayelsa for being aware and partnering with the police,” he said
By Simon Utebor