Former Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Olu Falae, has on Monday revealed that his family paid ransom to his abductors before he was freed on Thursday.
He said the kidnappers only freed him after they received payment, adding that he trekked for 15 kilometres before he was picked up by the police in Owo, several kilometres from Akure, the Ondo State capital.
The former minister’s disclosure has put a lie to the claim by the Nigeria police that no ransom was paid before his release.
Recall that after spending four days in the kidnappers den, Falae who was on Thursday escorted back home by security operatives said he slept on the floor for four days and trekked several kilometers to get to the hideout of his abductors.
In an interview after he accompanied Falae home, IGP Arase said: “The important thing now is that Baba Falae is back home safe and sound according to the mandate given to me by the President. He said that no ransom was paid and that nobody has been arrested. Asked about where the victim was rescued, the IGP said it was a security matter and not meant for public consumption.
Today’s admission comes as youths from the four Akure-speaking local government areas of Ondo State Monday trooped to major roads in the state capital to protest the recent abduction of the former Secretary to the Government (SGF), Chief Olu Falae by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
The youths under the aegis of Akure Youth Coalition (AYC) decried the activities of herdsmen, who they accused of terrorising people of Akureland and the state on their farmlands.
The protesting youths from Akure South, Akure North, Ifedore and Idanre Local Government areas, carried placards of various inscription.
The youths, who converged on the converged on the town hall in the heart of the town and marched to the Deji’s palace and Ondo State House of Assembly with placards, which protested last week’s kidnap of the elder statesman.
The former Minister who had a wound on his left elbow looked frail upon release spoke in hushed tones while telling the governor and his family members his experience last week. Falae confirmed that his abductors were the Fulani herdsmen who invaded his farm last Monday.
According to him, after he was kidnapped he was made to trek with the herdsmen from his farm located at Ilado in Akure North council area of the state to Owo, which is another council area in the state.
Falae told the governor that for the four days he was with the Fulani herdsmen he slept on bare ground and trekked several kilometers throughout the night to get to the hideout of the kidnappers.
According to him, when his family offered to pay N2 million, his abductors said: “Is it Boko Haram that your family wants to give N2 million?”
He said it was an experience that he would never forget in his entire lifetime.
In an interview after he accompanied Falae home, IGP Arase said: “The important thing now is that Baba Falae is back home safe and sound according to the mandate given to me by the President.
“President Muhammadu Buhari gave me a mandate and that is what I have done exactly, rescuing Baba Falae and bringing him back home safe and sound.’’
According to him; “We are going to diversify our strategy so that hoodlums will not overwhelm the state.
‘’We will continue to degrade, catch and bring them to book.
He said that no ransom was paid and that nobody has been arrested.