Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chief Olu Falae, has been freed by his abductors.
Confirming his release, the Commissioner for Information of Ondo State, Kayode Akinmade, said that Chief Falae was taken to the Government House and from there to his home.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Wednesday directed the Inspector-General of Police and other security agencies to take all necessary action to ensure the safe and speedy rescue of the former presidential candidate.
Chief Olu Falae was kidnapped from his farm in Ondo State on Monday, September 21
The Nigeria police has given insight into how a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Olu Falae, was rescued by its personnel, in an operation it said was coordinated by Inspector General Solomon Arase.
He was rescued and reunited with his family Thursday. It is not clear whether any ransom was paid. His abductors had demanded a N100million ransom, later reducing it to N90million.
But Police spokesperson, Olabisi Kolawole, said in a statement Thursday night that the former minister was rescued after the Force launched aerial and land operations in seach of the kidnappers.
She said the rescue operation began on Monday, the day the Afenifere chieftain was abducted and took the search party to all parts of Ondo state.
She also said Mr. Falae was eventually rescued in Owo.
Ms. Kolawole said, “The rescue of Chief Olu Falae from his captives on September 24th, 2015 was made possible as the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Solomon E. Arase, fdc NPM coordinated both aerial and land operations to ensure the freedom of the former presidential candidate of the SDP.
“The operation which started in the early hours of the aforementioned date, combed every nook and cranny of Ondo state till success was achieved in Owo.
“Speaking in Owo while re-uniting Chief Olu Falae with his family, the Inspector-General of Police said; those who think Nigeria is lawless should have a rethink as the Nigeria Police Force and other sister agencies are everywhere to deal decisively with those miscreants who intend to test the capabilities of the Force.
“He further said that the Former Secretary to the Federal Government is hale and hearty meanwhile, the Nigeria Police promised to leave no stone unturned till the perpetrators of the dastardly act are brought to book.”
Chief Oluyemisi said he slept on the floor for four days and trekked several kilometers to get to the hideout of his abductors.
Falae said this while narrating his ordeal in the hands of his abductors to the state governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko who visited him after he was excorted home by the Inspector General of Police
The former Minister who had a wound on his left elbow looked frail and spoke in hushed tones while telling the governor and his family members his experience.
According to him, after he was kidnapped he was made to trek with the herdsmen from his farm located at Ilado in Akure North council area of the state to Owo, which is another council area in the state.
Falae told the governor that for the four days he was with the Fulani herdsmen he slept on bare ground and trekked several kilometers throughout the night to get to the hideout of the kidnappers.
According to him, when his family offered to pay N2 million, his abductors said: “Is it Boko Haram that your family wants to give N2 million?”
A family source later informed Vanguard that their father said that any time he was exhausted, the eight herdsmen, used to back him one after the other until they got to Owo.
He said it was an experience that he would never forget in his entire lifetime.
There are conflicting reports about his rescue because according to one account by Vanguard Fulani herdsmen dropped Chief Falae in front of Joyland Hotel in Owo and the security operatives later picked him up from there to Akure.
It was gathered that the family and the security operatives had to appeal to the owner of the hotel to allow the politician have a change of clothes in their room.
His Personal Assistant, Captain Moshood Raji (retd), took back the clothes he wore for four days in the kidnappers den to his residence in Akure.
Asked about where the victim was rescued, the IGP said it was a security matter and not meant for public consumption.
In an interview after he accompanied Falae home, IGP Arase said: “The important thing now is that Baba Falae is back home safe and sound according to the mandate given to me by the President.
“President Muhammadu Buhari gave me a mandate and that is what I have done exactly, rescuing Baba Falae and bringing him back home safe and sound.’’
He vowed that the Police will continue to battle insecurity frontally.
According to him; “We are going to diversify our strategy so that hoodlums will not overwhelm the state.
‘’We will continue to degrade, catch and bring them to book.
He said that no ransom was paid and that nobody has been arrested.
Vanguard investigations claimed that the family paid a ransom running into several millions of Naira, but the sources refused to disclose how much. Police on the other hand, however, denied ransom payment.