By Dayo Johnson
AKURE—AFTER four days in the kidnappers den, the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Chief Oluyemisi Falae who was yesterday 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.
Falae said this while narrating his ordeal in the hands of his abductors to the state governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko who visited him after he was excorted home by the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Solomon Arase at about 4.14pm in a black Police SUV, marked NPF 03-23.
The IGP rode in another Police SUV with number plate NPF 8713 C.
Injury on left elbow
The former Minister who had a wound on his left elbow looked frail and spoke in hushed tones while telling the governor and his family members his experience. Falae confirmed that his abductors were the Fulani herdsmen who invaded his farm on 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.
Immediately he arrived his residence, his personal physician who was waiting gave him medication.
Vanguard gathered that the Fulani herdsmen dropped Chief Falae in front of Joyland Hotel in Owo and the security operatives later picked him up from there to Akure.
It was gathered that the family and the security operatives had to appeal to the owner of the hotel to allow the politician have a change of clothes in their room.
His Personal Assistant, Captain Moshood Raji (retd), took back the cloth he wore for four days in the kidnappers den to his residence in Akure.
The politician was accompanied to his Oba-Ile residence by the IGP, the Commissioner of Police, CP Mike Ogbodu, after he was picked up in Owo where his abductors reportedly dropped him.
A family source later informed Vanguard that their father said that any time he was exhausted, the eight herdsmen, used to back him one after the other until they got to Owo.
IGP Arase speaks
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.’’
He vowed that the Police will continue to battle insecurity frontally.
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.
Asked about where the victim was rescued, the IGP said it was a security matter and not meant for public consumption.
Speaking with newsmen after meeting with Chief Falae, Ondo State governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko who arrived the residence at about 4.35pm thanked God that the politician is back safe and sound.
Mimiko said he was worried and prayed that Chief Falae should come back home safely.
He said that he was worried that the issue of kidnapping was taking a dangerous dimension in Nigeria, saying “we must tackle this in wider dimension that somebody of his pedigree was taken away while working on his farm.”
Dependable sources said that the family concluded the ransom agreement with the kidnappers on Wednesday and they were asked to pick him up in Lokoja, Kogi State.
But the kidnappers later called that he would not be released until yesterday ostensibly to beat any security tab on them.
It was after they reportedly dropped him in Owo that they told the family to pick him up in front of the hotel.
Falae’s children and newsmen
Meanwhile, the politician’s children were hostile to newsmen, ordering them out of the compound after which the gate was shut against them.
The politician’s daughters called journalists names, saying they did not need the exposure given to their father’s travail.
Vanguard gathered authoritatively that the family paid a ransom running into several millions of Naira, but the sources refused to disclose how much. Police on the other hand, however, denied ransom payment.
Political associates of the politician trooped to his residence to welcome him back.
The Primate of the Anglican Church, Most Revd. Nicholas Okoh on Wednesday, led over 180 Bishops to pray for the release of Chief Falae at their meeting which was held in Akure, the Ondo State capital.