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After 65 days in captivity, the six abducted pupils of the Lagos State Model College, Igbonla, Epe, regained their freedom on Friday, but was brought back to Lagos on Saturday afternoon amidst tight security personally by the Ondo State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu. He handed the six boys all wearing jersies of foreign football clubs including Barcelona, Arsenal and Manchester United to the waiting Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Idiat Adebue at Government House.
Though it was not clear why the boys were putting on the shirts, it would be recalled that they were released in Ajakpa Community in Ese Odo Local Government Area of Ondo State.
It was gathered that no ransom was paid before the victims were released, even though there had been an earlier report last two weeks that parents had paid N31mn and the kidnappers were asking for additional N1.5mn for their return transport logistics.
Addressing relieved parents and Lagosians who trooped out to welcome the boys after a formal handover from the Ondo State Governor, and Police authorities lead by Police Commissioner, Fatai Owoseni who brought the boys back to Lagos, Governor Akinwinmi Ambode, represented by the Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Adebule said government will use the period of the vacation to reinforce security structures in state schools.
All the parents and family relations were on hand to receive the boys at Government House, Alausa on Saturday.
Explaining more on the success of the rescue operations, the State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni revealed that whereas over 20 kidnappers were gunned down, about eight Policemen and local vigilantes who took part in the mission sustained injuries.
This twist however, is now casting doubts on the earlier claims that about N31mn had been paid by the parents in previous reports which were also countered by the Police authorities in Lagos.
Owoseni also disclosed that one person who posed as kidnapper and was extorting monies from parents was also trailed and apprehended.