MEMBERS of the Ondo State Security Network Agency popularly known as the Amotekun Corps have stepped up its operations over the last few days by successfully rescuing nine of the 12 victims who were recently kidnapped from an 18-seater passenger bus.
Last week, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu signed a bill recently passed by the Ondo State House of Assembly into law, making it a criminal offence to engage in open grazing and ever since then, Amotekun has swing into action. On Thursday last week, the Amotekun Corps arrested three Fulani cattle herdsmen and confiscated 40 of their cows after they were found to have breached the open grazing law.
Now, the outfit has stepped up its presence in Ondo State by securing the release of these passengers who were recently abducted while on a Lagos bound bus which was on transit through Ondo State from Abuja. Adetunji Adeleye, the commander of the Ondo State Security Network Agency, said efforts are still ongoing to rescue the three other victims.
Earlier this week, the kidnappers who waylaid the bus along the Idoani-Ifira road in Akoko South East Local Government Area, kidnapped the passengers after shooting sporadically into the air. According to Mr Adeleye, the gunshots attracted the operatives of the Amotekun Corps, who immediately swung into action.
Olufunmi Odunlami, the spokesman for the Ondo State Police Command, said its anti-kidnapping unit was already working with sister agencies to ensure that the remaining travellers are rescued unhurt. It is not clear where the nine rescued ones are, although it is believed they have been handed over to the police.
Chief Boboye Ojomo, a community leader in Ifira Akoko, attributed the robberies and kidnappings within the axis to the state of the road which had for long been in deplorable condition. He said the federal road from Ipele to Idoani and Isua Akoko had been abandoned by the contractors handling the project.