RCCG Pastor and Passengers Kidnapped in Oyo State, Nigeria

Gunmen kidnap RCCG pastor and 14 others in Oyo, Nigeria, sparking police investigation and highlighting ongoing security challenges in the region. The pastor has since been freed, but the incident underscores the need for increased efforts to combat kidnapping.

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Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
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RCCG Pastor and Passengers Kidnapped in Oyo State, Nigeria

RCCG Pastor and Passengers Kidnapped in Oyo State, Nigeria

On April 21, 2024, Pastor Olugbenga Olawore of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) and 14 other passengers were kidnapped from a 14-seater commercial bus on the Maya axis of the Lanlate-Eruwa Road in Oyo State, Nigeria. The Oyo State Police Command has confirmed the incident and stated that a police investigation is underway.

Pastor Olawore, who serves at Heavens Gate Parish, RCCG Lagos Province 73, was returning from Ipapo town where he had gone to finalize the burial arrangements for his mother, Deaconess Deborah Olawore, scheduled for April 26. The kidnappers, suspected to be of Fulani extraction, called the pastor's wife and demanded a ransom of 10 million naira.

The Oyo State Police Public Relations Officer, SP Adewale Osifeso, confirmed the abduction and stated that some of the victims had been rescued. "Police operatives, in collaboration with other security agencies and local hunters, were searching the forest and surrounding areas to rescue the remaining victims and arrest the suspects," Osifeso said. The rescued victims are assisting with useful leads to help the ongoing investigation.

Why this matters: The kidnapping of a pastor and passengers in Oyo State highlights the ongoing security challenges faced by Nigerians, particularly in rural areas. This incident emphasizes the need for increased efforts by law enforcement and government agencies to combat the menace of kidnapping and ensure the safety of citizens.

The Oyo State Commissioner for Information, Prince Dotun Oyelade, confirmed that Pastor Olawore has regained his freedom. Oyelade stated that the state government is monitoring the security situation and working closely with the Commissioner of Police and security teams to ensure the safety of citizens. He reiterated that Oyo State remains the most peaceful state in the federation. The police have assured that updates on the investigation will be provided accordingly.

Key Takeaways

  • Pastor Olugbenga Olawore and 14 others kidnapped from bus in Oyo, Nigeria
  • Kidnappers demanded 10 million naira ransom from pastor's wife
  • Some victims rescued, police searching for remaining captives and suspects
  • Kidnapping highlights security challenges in rural Nigeria, need for action
  • Pastor Olawore has regained freedom, Oyo govt monitoring security situation