The Department of State Service, DSS, yesterday presented two suspected abductors of Chief Olu Falae, a former Secretary to Government of the Federation, in Abuja.
Chief Falae, was abducted on his farm at Ilado village, Akure, Ondo state on his 77th birthday on Sept. 21 by armed Fulani herdsmen and released four days later.
Presenting the suspects, Mr Abdullahi Garba, an operative of the service, said that they were arrested on October 5 at J. Zebra hotel in Lokoja.
One of the paraded suspects, Abdullahi Usman (aka Kadiri) yesterday, gave a narration of how he helped to pinpoint “a big man who goes to his farm in Toyota Hilux van” who could be kidnapped to provide Sallah and wedding funds to some of his friends.
Narrating how Chief Falae was abducted, while he and another suspect, Babawuro Kato were paraded by DSS operatives at their headquarters in Abuja, Usman said he was approached by some of his friends in Kwara State shortly before the last Eid El-Kabir during a wedding ceremony.
Usman continued that one Datijo approached him complaining that he was so broke that he might not be able to satisfactorily celebrate the festival unless he (Usman) was able to give information on any big man that could be abducted for ransom.
“I then told him that I know one man who used to bring a Hilux vehicle to his farm and I used to see him as I move my cows about”, he said.
That was how the gang members arranged to kidnap Chief Falae on his farm on Monday, September 21, 2015. Usman said they then took Falae to Owo, where he was kept at a place called ‘Pipeline’ around Benin junction.
Eventually, the ransom of N5 million was paid to Datijo, who, according to Usman made away with it.
In their narrative, it was the second suspect, Kato who ferried Datijo and Falae on his commercial motorcycle from the hideout to where he was eventually picked up by the Police.
Kato however, insisted that he was not a member of the gang as he was only contracted to transport the two that night.
According to Garba, who addressed the press on behalf of the DSS, the suspects were picked up in Lokoja.
He stated that the abductors were mere criminals and that their action was not motivated by any political or ethnic sentiment.
“The service wishes to state that the abductors were mere criminals. Investigations have further revealed that their action was not targeted at Falae as a statesman and prominent Yoruba leader.”
He enjoined Nigerians to continue to live peacefully with one another and shun attempts by mischief makers to give the unfortunate incident an ethnic coloration and use same to cause disaffection among the populace.
“To this effect, the Service wishes to appeal to all Nigerians to be law abiding and responsible in their commentary on sensitive issues affecting national security.
“The Service will not hesitate to deal decisively with anybody, no matter how highly placed, in accordance with the laws as long as such a person (s) failed to respect the law or peacefully coexistence among the good citizens of this great country.”