The Akwa Ibom State Police Command said it has rescued a 63-year-old kidnapped victim and former worker with the Shell Petroleum Development Company (name withheld) in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area of the state.

This is as it said operatives of the command had killed one suspected kidnapper and launched a manhunt for other fleeing suspects in the state.

This was contained in a statement by the command’s Public Relations Officer, ASP Timfon John, on Monday.

John said the suspected kidnapper was killed during a gun battle with operatives of the command while their victim was rescued following an intelligence report.

“On June 22, 2024, following intelligence information available at the Command’s disposal about the whereabouts of a retired Shell Petroleum Company worker, (name withheld) ‘M’, 63 years, who was kidnapped on June 17, 2024, by four unknown armed men dressed in military camouflage, the Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom State Police Command, Waheed Ayilara, ordered the SWAT operatives of the command to immediately swing into action.

“Upon sighting the police, the kidnappers started firing at them. During the ensuing gun duel, one of the kidnappers sustained a serious gunshot injury, while others escaped. The injured suspect was taken to a hospital where he was confirmed dead.

“The victim was rescued unhurt in a compound located at Ikot Udobong Village in Etim Ekpo LGA. Preliminary investigations revealed that the kidnappers had initially demanded N50m ransom and later agreed to N20m

“No ransom was however paid as of the time of the rescue. Efforts are ongoing to arrest the fleeing suspects,” she stated.

The command’s spokesperson said the CP had reaffirmed the command’s commitment to rid the state of crime and criminal elements.

She stated that the CP while appreciating the people for their support to the command, urged them to report any suspicious movement or person to the police through the emergency lines  09040000065, 08020913810 or report to the nearest police station.

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