Alleged Cyber Fraud: EFCC Displays Content Of Naira Marley’s iPhone

A screenshot from a video showing Naira Marley having a chat with his lawyers at the court premises on Wednesday, October 27, 2021.

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has displayed the contents of the phone seized from music artiste, Azeez Fashola popularly known as Naira Marley.

When the defendant’s trial resumed on Wednesday at the Federal High Court in Lagos, the EFCC through the virtual projection of a Compact Disc (CD) with 51,933 pages showed the contents and analysis of the phone.

The commission did this while leading in evidence, its second witness, Mr Augustine Anosike, a mobile forensic expert.

Picking up from where he left off on Tuesday, the witness, again reiterated portions of his earlier testimonies and pointed out the corresponding visual spots of those testimonies on the screen of the projected CD.

Screenshot from a video showing Naira Marley with his lawyers at the court in Lagos on Wednesday, October 27, 2021.

 

For instance, the witness showed visual displays of the credit card numbers, chats, as well as incoming and outgoing Short Message Services (SMS) that were analysed from the defendant’s iPhone.

After the CD was displayed for about 45 minutes, the prosecutor then asked the witness to confirm two exhibits A and D, which were vital elements of his analysis.

Exhibit A is the Forensic Report Form, while exhibit D is the iPhone of the defendant.

Under cross-examination, the defence counsel, Olalekan Ojo, sought permission for the defendant’s iPhone to be kept in the custody of the court rather than for it to continue to remain in the custody of the prosecution.

He submitted that the court was capable of keeping exhibits, adding that it would make it easier for the defence team to apply for the exhibits if needed.

The court noted the request.

The counsel, thereafter, asked the witness if his analysis had also covered a possible number of persons that had used the defendant’s iPhone to which the witness replied that the number of persons could not be ascertained.

“As an experienced operative, are you aware that a person other than the owner of a phone can have access to the use of that phone?” he queried.

The witness, in his response, answered, “That will only be possible where the owner grants access.”

When the witness was asked who supplied him with the password to the iPhone, he told the court that the defendant provided the password to the investigating operatives who consequently, transmitted the same to him for his analysis.

After watching all the evidence, Justice Nicholas Oweibo adjourned the trial till November 30, as well as December 13 and 14.

 

Evidences Bordering On Cyber Fraud

On May 20, 2019, the anti-graft agency arraigned Naira Marley, who sang the popular song, “Am I a Yahoo Boy?” before the Federal High Court in Lagos.

The EFCC said the offences were committed on different dates between November 26 and December 11, 2018, as well as May 10, 2019.

It alleged that Naira Marley and his accomplices conspired to use different Access Bank ATM cards to defraud their victims.

The EFCC also said that the defendant possessed and used counterfeit credit cards belonging to different people, with intent to defraud others.

The alleged offences are said to contravene the provisions of Sections 1 23 (1) (b), 27 (1) and 33(9) of Cyber Crime (Prohibition) Prevention Act, 2015.

When arraigned before Justice Oweibo, Naira Marley pleaded not guilty.

The court later granted him bail in the sum of N2 million with two sureties in like sum.

Wike Challenges FG On Legality Of Executive Order 10

A file photo of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike.

 

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has challenged the Federal Government on the legality of Executive Order 10.

The governor said the action of the Federal Government to recommend uniform terms and conditions for the administration of the judicial arm of government in a Federal System of Government prejudices the powers of the federating states to manage its affairs.

Wike said this on Monday at a dinner organised in Government House for members of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) who are holding their 61st Annual General Conference in Port Harcourt.

RELATED: FG’s Executive Order 10 Will Destroy Criminal Justice In States, Says Wike

“I will not sign any law that dictates… I was not appointed, I was elected by the people of the state, and by law, I am the only one that can present the budget to legislators.

“Nobody can force me on how my state would operate,” he said.

He argued that the constitution of the country guarantees the legal and financial independence of the judiciary, which his administration is religiously implementing.

He said the funds he releases for the concurrent expenditure of the judiciary in Rivers State and his intervention in capital projects are far beyond the allocation which is recommended in the Federal Government’s Executive Order 10 which was signed by President Muhammadu Buhari in May 2020 to grant financial autonomy to the judiciary across the 36 states of the federation.

Governor Wike also warned against the deduction of Rivers State funds from source, for the judiciary, as recommended in Executive Order 10, stating that he will not sign the recommendations despite the pressure from the Chief Judge of Rivers State, Justice Simeon Amadi.

Insurgency, Banditry Have Forced Over 12m Children Out Of School, Says Presidency

File photo of an empty classroom in Abuja. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

The Presidency has lamented the impact of insurgency and banditry on school attendance in the country noting that over 12 million children have been forced out of school.

Chief of Staff to the President, Ibrahim Gambari said this on Tuesday at the fourth International Conference on Safe Schools Declaration in Abuja.

Gambari, who represented President Muhammadu Buhari at the event lamented the increasing trend of school kidnaping noting that although the abducted students are eventually released, the trauma lingers.

“It is disheartening to note that even when the abducted students are released, the trauma of the incidences remains long in their minds; hence the plan to have teachers trained on psycho-social support.

“There are more than 12 million children currently out of school and the wider implication of the ongoing is that of a generation of children traumatised and afraid of going to school, especially the girl child,” he said.

He pointed out that fear of abduction and a traumatic experience from school children, who have been victims of kidnapping, has forced many children of school age to stay out of educational institutions, thereby increasing the problem of out-of-school children.

“The incessant attacks on the country’s educational system in the form of kidnapping, abduction of pupils; students through the increased activities of insurgents and general insecurity in our schools have been chief among contributing factors responsible for the growing number of out-of-school children.

“These perpetrators of evil, having turned their attention to innocent children in boarding schools or institutions outside city limits, adopt young learners in large numbers,” Gambari said.

 

The Chief of Staff, however, assured Nigerians that the government is mindful of the fact that, to record adequate achievements in the education sector, the system would require a total overhaul and changes to improve the education sector.

 

– Working To Overcome –                

The first mass school abduction in the country was in the northeast region in 2014, when Boko Haram members picked 276 girls from Chibok, triggering a global campaign called #BringBackOurGirls.

Since then, attacks on schools have grown in number and spread across the northern part of the country.

The President’s Chief of staff, however, assured that efforts are ongoing to curb the ugly trend.

“This remains a challenge that we are working towards overcoming by deploying orthodox and unorthodox methods.

“I must tell you that it has been tough dealing with these security challenges and their effect. Moving forward, our faith in the nation is unshaken. We are strong, we remain so and we are determined and robust in order to enhance the security of our learning institutions.”

 

Alleged Cyber Fraud: Trial of Naira Marley Resumes With EFCC’s Analysis Of His iPhone

Naira Marley Gets N2m Bail
A file photo of Naira Marley.

 

The trial of music artiste, Azeez Fashola, popularly known as Naira Marley, on 11 charges bordering on conspiracy, possession of counterfeit cards and fraud, resumed on Tuesday at the Federal High Court, Lagos.

The court listened to the testimony of a second prosecution witness, Anosike Augustine, a mobile forensic expert with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Led in evidence by the prosecutor, Rotimi Oyedepo, the witness continued his testimony which he had begun in 2020 just before the COVID-19 lockdown.

Anosike narrated how about 2,410 short messages were analysed from the iPhone of the defendant. He also said that different credit card numbers were extracted from the defendant’s iPhone.

According to him, the Apple iPhone is a sophisticated device capable of storing a large volume of information, adding that it is the sim card that basically identifies users of applications such as WhatsApp.

While analysing Naira Marley’s iPhone, the witness said 977 Short Message Service (SMS) and 1,433 chat messages, were discovered adding that there were also seven pending status update messages.

The witness specifically took his time to read out a plethora of credit card numbers and messages sent from the phone on different dates and times, as well as OTP codes sent.

He listed some of the recipients of the messages to include one Yadd and another Raze.

File photo of Naira Marley in court premises in May, 2019.

 

After his testimony, the prosecutor informed the court that all the analysed messages were contained in a Compact Disc (CD) but that the prosecution had only printed out those portions which were material to its case.

The prosecutor then asked the court if he could be allowed to bring a projector for the purpose of playing the CD in the open court, so as to fully prove its cyber fraud case and discharge the burden placed on the prosecution and against the defendant.

The defence counsel, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Olalekan Ojo did not have any objections to the request and the court allowed it.

Justice Nicholas Oweibo, therefore, adjourned till tomorrow, October 27, for the CD to be played.

 

Evidences Bordering On Cyber Fraud

On May 20, 2019, the anti-graft agency had arraigned the artiste Naira Marley, who sang the popular song: “Am I a Yahoo Boy”, before the Federal High Court, Lagos.

The anti-graft agency said the offences were committed on different dates between November 26, 2018, and December 11, 2018, as well as May 10, 2019.

The commission alleged that Naira Marley and his accomplices conspired to use different Access Bank ATM cards to defraud their victims.

The EFCC also said that the defendant possessed and used counterfeit credit cards belonging to different people, with intent to defraud others.

The alleged offences are said to contravene the provisions of Sections 1 23 (1) (b), 27 (1) and 33(9) of Cyber Crime (Prohibition) Prevention Act, 2015.

Before Justice Nicholas Oweibo, Naira Marley pleaded not guilty.

The court granted him bail in the sum of N2million with two sureties in like sum.

At the last sitting of the court, Justice Oweibo admitted a C.D containing the phone analysis of the embattled singer.

The CD had been tendered in evidence at a previous proceeding by Anosike Augustine, a mobile forensic expert with the EFCC.

Anosike who is the second prosecution witness in the EFCC had told the court how he analysed the contents of the iPhone allegedly retrieved from Naira Marley during the investigation.

Counsel to Naira Marley, Olalekan Ojo, had objected to the admissibility of the evidence.

In his ruling, Justice Oweibo overruled the objections of the counsel and admitted the C.D in evidence.

The judge said, “l have considered the agreement of both parties as well as the ground for the objection, I consider the C.D to be admissible in view of the nature of this case and the evidence of the other prosecution witness.

“Accordingly it is hereby admitted in evidence and marked exhibit F.”

Before the testimony of the second witness, the EFCC had called another of its forensic expert, Nuru Buhari.

Mr Buhari, who testified as the first prosecution witness had told Justice Oweibo, that various stolen credit card information were retrieved from the musician’s laptop.

Apart from the stolen credit card information, website visit history recovered from the device showed that the top five most visited sites dealt with buying and selling stolen credit card information.

Mr Buhari also informed the court that suspicious apps that are mostly used by people with shady deals on the internet were found on the laptop.

Mr Buhari said an analysis of the administrator account on the laptop revealed that the admin is one Naira Marley and the account was connected to his iCloud account.

Tordue Salem: We Have Traced His Last Contact, Conversation – Police

Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba briefing journalists on Monday.

 

The Police have revealed the progress made in their investigation into the disappearance of Tordue Salem, a journalist with Vanguard Newspapers.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba who spoke on behalf of the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr Usman Alkali explained that they have traced the person Salem had contact with last and the last phone conversation before his disappearance.

Mba explained this on Monday when members of NUJ, FCT Council marched to force headquarters in Abuja to express displeasure with the silence of the police on the matter.

“As I speak to you, we have made significant process with the investigation. We were able to trace when he left the National Assembly. We were able to interact with a young lady who spent time with him that night.

“We have the recordings of the last call he made. Also, we were able to speak with six different persons he spoke to that night.

“There are a lot of efforts behind the scene taking place,” he explained.

Mba said the police are very interested in the case and efforts are going on ‘behind the scene.’

He added that the IGP has given a firm instruction that no human or material resource should be spared in the effort at locating and understanding the rationale behind Salem’s disappearance.

While explaining why the police have kept quiet on their investigation, Mba said the silence was deliberate.

He added that he is glad “that the Chairman of NUJ, FCT Council, understood the significance of confidential briefing and because of that request, I would rather do more of confidential briefing.

“The Police intentionally kept quiet on this case. In investigations, it is called ‘Tactical Silence.

“We deliberately kept quiet because when you are working on a sensitive case you want to get to a comfortable altitude before you begin to brief the public.”

The chairman of the Abuja chapter of the NUJ, Emmanuel Ogbeche, while handing over a petition for onward delivery to the IGP, said the incident is of concern to journalists and urged the police to do everything possible to rescue Salem alive.

Legendary Former Rangers Manager Walter Smith Dies, Aged 73

(FILES) In this file photo taken on December 08, 2009, Ranger’s coach Walter Smith smiles during a press conference in Seville, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League football match against Sevilla. (Photo by Cristina Quicler / AFP)

 

Former Scotland and Rangers manager Walter Smith has died at the age of 73, the Glasgow giants confirmed on Tuesday.

“It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of our former manager, chairman and club legend, Walter Smith,” Rangers said in a statement.

Smith is Rangers’ second-most successful ever manager, winning 21 trophies across two spells in charge.

Already at the club as assistant to Graeme Souness, Smith was appointed full-time manager at Ibrox in 1991 and won seven league titles in eight years to lead the club to a record-equalling nine consecutive Scottish league titles.

After a four-year stint at Everton and a brief spell as Alex Ferguson’s assistant at Manchester United, he was appointed manager of Scotland in 2004.

In 2007, he returned to Ibrox, winning three more league titles and guiding Rangers to the UEFA Cup final in 2008 before retiring in 2011.

“It is almost impossible to encapsulate what Walter meant to every one of us at Rangers,” said Rangers chairman Douglas Park.

“He embodied everything that a Ranger should be. His character and leadership was second to none and will live long in the memory of everyone he worked with during his two terms as first-team manager.

“Winning 10 top-flight titles as manager, five Scottish Cups and six League Cups, as well as leading his club to the UEFA Cup Final in 2008, he will be remembered by the football community across the world.

“His spells as Scotland manager as well as managing in the English Premier League underlined his credentials as one of the great modern-day football managers.

“However, for Rangers supporters, he was much more than just a football manager. Walter was a friend to many, a leader, an ambassador, and most of all, a legend.”

President Buhari Arrives Saudi Arabia For Future Investment Summit

File Photo of President Muhammadu Buhari coming down from the Presidential jet

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday arrived Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for the Future Investment Initiative Institute conference.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu announced in a statement that Buhari arrived Saudi Arabia at 11:50 pm on Monday.

Read Also: eNaira Will Increase Nigeria’s GDP By $29bn – Buhari 

“The President was received at King Khalid International Airport by the Deputy Governor of Riyadh, Prince Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Abdulaziz,” Shehu added.

President Buhari, alongside other world leaders, will participate in the opening ceremony of the event on Tuesday and the three-day plenary sessions focused on the theme for the 5th edition of the summit, “Invest in Humanity.”

Alleged N7.1bn Fraud: FG Appeals Judgement Prohibiting Retrial Of Orji Uzor Kalu

A photo collage of Orji Kalu and a court gave

 

The Federal Government has asked the Court of Appeal in Abuja, to order a fresh trial in an alleged N7.1billion laundering charge against the former Governor of Abia State, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu.

The government is asking the appellate court to set aside the September 29 judgement of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which prohibited it from retrying the former governor and his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited.

READ ALSO: Alleged N780m Fraud: EFCC Grills Former Senate President Anyim

The Federal Government, through the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), also wants the Appeal Court to order Senator Kalu and his company, to submit themselves for retrial, in line with the order of the Supreme Court in its May 8, 2020 judgement, voiding the earlier trial and conviction of Kalu and two others, and ordering a retrial.

The requests were contained in two notices of appeal, filed by a lawyer to the EFCC, Rotimi Jacobs, against the two judgements delivered by Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

 

Prohibition To Try

The Federal High Court in Abuja had earlier in September barred the Federal Government from retrying the former Governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, on the N7.1billion money laundering charge which the EFCC earlier preferred against him.

In a judgement delivered by Justice Inyang Ekwo, the court held that the Supreme Court did not in the verdict it gave on May 8, 2020, order the retrial of either Kalu or his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited.

Justice Ekwo held that the Supreme Court only ordered the retrial of former Director of Finance in Abia State, Jones Udeogu, who was the appellant before it.

In reaction, the EFCC said it will appeal this judgement.

Kalu was serving a 12-year jail term for N7.1 billion fraud when the Supreme Court, ruling on an appeal by his co-defendant, Ude Udeogu, on May 8, 2020, nullified the proceedings leading to their conviction.

The Supreme Court had ordered a retrial at the Federal High Court.

But Kalu who profited from the ruling to secure release from the Kuje Correctional Centre filed an application before the Federal High Court in Abuja to stop his retrial.

Earlier today, Justice Ekwo had granted the ex-governor’s request on the grounds that the apex court’s judgment did not order his retrial and that by virtue of Section 36 (9) of the 1999 constitution as amended, or Section 283 (2) of the ACJA (Administration of Criminal Justice Act), “no person can be retried on the offence upon which he has been convicted”.

The EFCC in a statement by its Head of Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, however, believes the judge erred in this ruling as it says Section 36(9) of the 1999 Constitution is applicable only where the previous judgment was by a court of competent jurisdiction.

In this case, the apex court had in the said judgment, described the process that led to the conviction of Kalu as a nullity because the judge came from the Court of Appeal to decide the matter.

The Commission further averred that the court erred in its ruling that the Supreme Court did not order the retrial of Kalu; that it amounts to cherry-picking for Kalu to profit from the decision of the apex court nullifying the conviction of his co-defendant, Ude Udeagu but is not prepared to face the burden of retrial.

Nigeria Launches Digital Currency eNaira

President Buhari during the launch said the adoption of new CBN digital currency is estimated to increase Nigeria’s GDP by $29 billion.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has launched the country’s digital currency, eNaira.

The event was held on Monday at the State House in Abuja, with the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo; governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, and other dignitaries in attendance.

During the launch, President Buhari said the adoption of new CBN digital currency is estimated to increase Nigeria’s GDP by $29 billion over the next 10 years.

“We have become the first country in Africa and one of the first in the world to introduce a digital currency to our citizens,” Buhari said at the event.

 

Other countries like China, Bahamas, and Cambodia have also launched digital currencies.

READ ALSO: eNaira Will Open New World Of Innovations – Expert

The digital currency has two applications – eNaira speed wallet and eNaira merchant wallet, which were launched on the Google Playstore and Apple Store on Monday at the State House, Abuja.

A statement on the eNaira website explained the overall function of the currency and its value to Nigeria’s economy.

“eNaira is a Central Bank of Nigeria-issued digital currency that provides a unique form of money denominated in Naira.

“eNaira serves as both a medium of exchange and a store of value, offering better payment prospects in retail transactions when compared to cash payments,” the statement read in part.

Additionally, the new payment system which has taken four years to crystallise, will drive financial inclusion, serve as a backbone for electronic payment in Nigeria and also enable the movement of more people from the informal to the formal sector, hence scaling up the tax base of the country.

eNaira Will Open New World Of Innovations – Expert

A photo collage of the CBN building and eNaira logo.

 

A fintech expert, Ayowande Adaelemo has described the Nigerian Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), known as the eNaira, as a game-changer that will open a new world of innovations.

The founder of a fintech company called Atmosphere said this on Monday in an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, maintaining that people in rural areas, especially at the bottom of the pyramid, will benefit more from the use of the digital currency.

“The most significant thing that would happen is that these people (in rural areas) will begin to see a huge difference between money in the bank and money in the hand but that is data. What this will do is that it will open a whole new world of innovation and I am hoping that mobile money operators and mobile network operators will latch onto this and roll out innovative services to rural areas,” he explained, hours before the planned launch of the digital currency by the CBN.

“You can pay money peer-to-peer, not necessarily with the use of cash; that is the game-changer. With eNaira, (as long as I have NFC, wifi, BlueTooth) I just point my phone to your phone and the transfer is done. A lot of stores in the rural areas will begin to latch onto this once they see the speed and the fact that there is no cost on transactions.”

Adalemo also hailed the move by the Federal government noting that eNaira is a win-win for all.

“It is powered by blockchain and this technology confers on it some levels of security even if your phone is stolen,” he added.

More Awareness Needed

 

Despite the laudable benefits which the new digital currency will bring to Nigerians, calls for more enlightenment about the eNaira have also been drummed up.

According to the National Coordinator, Nigeria Alliance for Affordable Internet, Teniola Olushola, Nigeria’s apex bank needs to do more to enlighten Nigerians about how to use the eNaira and its benefits.

“CBN is right to call it a journey. It has some underlined assumptions. The CBN still needs to do a lot of awareness,” he said during the show.

“Because there are those that are still not aware of this eNaira; there has to be some level of trust so they can accept this at the physical layer.

“The level of internet penetration is still very low. The CBN has started the digital transformation of the country. The government needs to build user acceptance and trust in the currency,” Olushola said.

eNaira Is A Journey

 

 

File photo of the CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele

 

The eNaira is set to be launched later in the day. According to the CBN, the launch is a culmination of years of research in advancing the boundaries of the payments system to make financial transactions easier and seamless for every strata of the society.

The eNaira, the bank added, marks a major step forward in the evolution of money.

“Given that the eNaira is a journey, the unveiling marks the first step in that journey which will continue with a series of further modifications, capabilities, and enhancements to the platforms.

“The CBN will continue to work with relevant partners to ensure a seamless process that will benefit every user, particularly those in the rural areas and the unbanked population,” it said in a press release on Monday.

It explained that since the eNaira is a new product, and amongst the first CBDCs in the world, there are structures to promptly address issues that might arise from the pilot implementation of the digital currency.

One Killed In Explosion At Ugandan Bar

Ugandan police officers investigate at a crime scene following a bomb blast last night in Kampala on October 24, 2021. PHOTO: BADRU KATUMBA / AFP

 

One person has been killed and seven others were injured in a “serious blast” in the Kampala, capital city of Uganda.

The explosion occurred at around 9:00 pm on Saturday at a popular streetside restaurant strip in Kawempe in northern Kampala.

“The police… have responded to a serious blast which occurred… at around 9 pm, at Digida eating point,” Uganda Police Force spokesman Fred Enanga said in a statement posted on Twitter late Saturday.

“One person has been fatally wounded and seven others rushed to Mulago National Referral hospital, with serious injuries.

“The scene has been cordoned off, and our joint task teams from the bomb squad called to thoroughly document the scene, to help determine whether the explosion arose out of an intentional act or not.”

A car of the Ugandan police’s bomb squad team is seen at a crime scene following a bomb blast last night in Kampala on October 24, 2021. PHOTO: BADRU KATUMBA / AFP

 

Police were asking the public to remain calm until the “true circumstances” surrounding the explosion were clear.

A nationwide coronavirus curfew is in effect from 7:00 pm in Uganda but is not uniformly enforced.

On October 8, the Islamic State group claimed responsibility for an alleged bomb attack against a police post in Kawempe, near where Saturday’s explosion occurred.

No blast or any injuries were reported by authorities or local media at the time, though police later confirmed a minor incident had occurred.

Both the UK and France have since updated their travel advice for Uganda, urging vigilance in crowded areas and public places like restaurants, bars and hotels.

“Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Uganda. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners,” stated the updated advice from the UK.

In 2010, twin bombings in Kampala targeting fans watching the World Cup final left 76 people dead.

Somalia’s Al-Shabaab militant group claimed responsibility for the blasts at a restaurant and at a rugby club.

The attack, the first outside Somalia by the insurgents, was seen as revenge for Uganda sending troops to the war-torn country as part of an African Union mission to confront Al-Shabaab.

AFP

Gunmen Kidnap Three Church Members In Ogun, Demand N6m Ransom

A file photo of a man carrying a gun.

 

Gunmen invaded a Cherubim and Seraphim Church at Obada-Oko, in Ewekoro Local Government Area of Ogun State in the early hours of Sunday, while worshippers were holding a vigil.

They kidnapped three worshippers and escaped with them into the bush.

The victims, identified as Ifeoluwa Alani-Bello, Adebare Oduntan, and Mary Oliyide.

Sources close to the families of the victims told journalists that the abductors have reached out and demanded a ransom of N6 million for them to regain their freedom.

READ ALSO: Jail Break: We’ll Recapture All Escaped Inmates – Aregbesola

This incident was confirmed by the police spokesperson in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi, who explained that the anti-kidnapping unit has been dispatched to the area to partner with the Obada-Oko Division of the police to rescue the victims.

He however reiterated the command’s warning to religious bodies against holding vigils or prayer sessions in isolated areas which would make their members vulnerable to kidnapping.

“It should also be noted that the police had also warned members of the public from having vigil and religious activities in areas considered to be isolated and that if at all such places of worship want to have programme, they should inform the police so that police patrol could be extended to such area and adequate security provided,” he said.