Kwara: Court adjourns abduction case brought against Seriki Fulani, 2 others
Justice Adenike Akinpelu of the Kwara state High Court in Ilorin on Monday adjourned the abduction case brought against Serikin Fulani in the state (ardo), Alhaji Usman Adamu, and two others by the Kwara state director of Public Prosecution (DPP) to January 18 for the continuation of hearing.
The Serikin Fulani and two others were accused of kidnapping one Abubakar Ahmad and allegedly collected a ransom of N1 million before his eventual release after spending 20 days.
Speaking after Monday’s proceedings, the state DPP, Ayoola Idowu Akande, said that four witnesses had so far been called, adding that progress had been made so far on the matter.
“Today we’ve made progress. We called a total number of four witnesses. The first one is the exhibit keeper, he tendered his evidence at the last adjourned date and he was cross-examined today. One Mallam Bami was also called to give his evidence. We also called the alleged victim of the case, Abubakar Ahmad. He had also given his evidence. We also called the man that took the marked ransom to the Seriki Fulani. Every other thing you may want to know, please contact the attorney general.
“Yes. The first defendant’s lawyer also brought up an application for bail for his client, but we told the court that the application was not ripe for such, while the Judge adjourned the matter to Wednesday, January 18, 2023”, he said.
During the proceedings, the victim of the alleged kidnap, Abubakar Ahmad, had told the court that he was kidnapped and tortured for 20 days in the Army barrack, Ilorin until his people paid a sum of N1 million ransom to effect his release.
Abubakar Ahmad said he is a driver of Fulani background and a member of the vigilance group in Eyenkorin area of the Ilorin metropolis. He said he was kidnapped on a Friday, last year July by three army personnel after a meeting with the chairman of the vigilance group in the state, Alhaji Saka, who he said is also Seriki Gaa Saka, Ilorin.
“As I was about to leave the Alhaji Saka office, I saw three persons in army uniform driving recklessly to overtake me and I had to stop. They ordered me into their vehicle, Sienna car, took my car key and my phones, which they immediately put off. They tied my hands to the back and covered my face. All these happened in broad daylight at about 3:00 pm.
What I later learnt when the vehicle stopped was that we were in an Army barrack and the leader of Fulani Bororo, Alhaji Usman Adamu, later came in. He asked me how many languages I understand. I told him I only understand two languages, namely Fulani and Yoruba. He later called two of my abductors aside and told them in Hausa that they should tie me well. My hands were again tied at my two elbows and was taken to cell at about 6:00 pm.
“When it was 20 days, one of the military men, Sahu, came at about 9:00 pm. and drove me in a vehicle with two other military personnel. We passed through Shao town, linking the Ilorin-Jebba expressway. We got to Olooru, Kambi village and the vehicle parked along the bush on the expressway. I was told to climb on a motorcycle and that was when I saw Serikin Fulani of Kambi village. The motorcycle took me to the palace of Serikin Fulani and that’s when I saw my father, my two brothers and two of my father’s friends.
“Serikin Fulani of Kambi village asked one of my brothers if I’m the one they’ve been looking for, saying, “Since you said you won’t give us money until you see him. Here he is”. My brother answered that I’m the one and handed over an N1 million cash to Serikin Fulani Kambi. And we left there to go home”.
During a cross-examination by the first defendant’s lawyer, Adebayo Adelodun, SAN, Abubakar denied that he was asked during his stay in Army custody about the abduction of a Chinese that later died.
While Adelodun SAN put it to the plaintiff that he only concocted the kidnap story to evade allegations of kidnap and that he was not kidnapped but arrested, Abubakar denied it.
Mr Yahaya Aminu, counsel to Serikin Fulani Kambi, Malam Gide Gidado, said that his client handed a parcel to the military before Abubakar’s release in the statement Abubakar wrote with the DSS. Abubakar, however, denied it, saying that his father only asked him to thank the Seriki Kambi for the role played in his release.
Also, the PW4, Mallam Farouq said that Abubakar’s brother informed him of the kidnap and told him that Seriki Fulani, Usman Adamu, had said that money should be found to get Abubakar freed. He said that money was contributed for his release, adding that the money was taken to the lawyer and to the DSS who marked the naira notes.
“We got to Kambi village and we were asked if money was brought, we said yes and asked them to bring Abubakar out before we pay them. That was when they produced Abubakar and we gave them N1 million cash.”
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