Five pupils and four staff members of Apostolic Faith Group of Schools in Emure Ekiti, Ekiti State have been abducted by unknown gunmen who have gone ahead to demand a N15 million ransom for their release.
On Monday, the gunmen attacked a bus conveying schoolchildren and staff back to their homes in Eporo. Nine of them including pupils and staff were taken to an unknown destination.
The school proprietor, Pastor Gabriel Adesanya revealed that the kidnappers contacted the family of one of the pupils on Tuesday, demanding a N10m ransom for each of the nine captives. On Friday however, the ransom was reduced to N15m for all the abductees with a stern instruction to pay promptly because the children were already weak. The abductors also threatened to kill the hostages if their families delayed the ransom payment.
An anonymous source from one of the victims' families disclosed that the families of the abductees have been trying desperately to raise the money demanded. The source added that on Thursday, the sum of N4 million was offered to the abductees, which they rejected, insisting on the N15 million requested.
"The families had tasked themselves and there was contribution in Eporo, but the money gathered is still a far-cry. What is needed right now is support. I will, on behalf of the families and the hostages, especially the children, appeal to the federal and state governments and all well-meaning Nigerians to come to our aid so that they can be released,” the source said.