Kidnapped cousin of former President Goodluck Jonathan, Mr. Jepthan Robert, has regained freedom from his abductors. He was said to be standing in front of his house around 9.30 pm when a fast-moving car stopped abruptly close to him and some masked men came down from the car and bundled him into it before he could raise the alarm.
Investigations by our correspondent indicated that Robert’s kidnap would be the sixth high profile kidnap incident carried out in Bayelsa State in five months.
Others kidnapped were the mother of the Secretary to the Bayelsa State Government, Mrs. Betinah Benson, Mr. Tari Ajanami, a top banker in the state, Chief Marvin Turner, father of Ogbia Council Chairman, Mr. Lotana Okoye, a popular businessman and Commissioner for Trade, Industry and Investment, Mr. Federal Otokito.
A statement by the family, yesterday, which confirmed the release of the businessman, said Jephtan regained freedom early yesterday morning after two weeks with his abductors in their den.
The statement signed by Austin Ekeinde on behalf of the family said: “We are glad to confirm that our brother, Mr. Jephthah Robert, has regain his freedom after a protracted ordeal in the hands of his kidnappers.
“He regained freedom in the early hours of today, Monday, February 7, 2022 about 7 a.m. He is in good health, but would see his doctor for routine medical check up.”
The family used the opportunity to appreciate the efforts of the Bayelsa State Commissioner of Police, the DSS and other well-meaning Nigerians who stood with the family during their trying times.
There was no information on whether or not ransom was paid for his release but the family insisted the incident was promptly reported to the law-enforcement agencies, which mounted pressure until he regained freedom.