Ten expatriates who were abducted in Gabon regained their freedom in Tombia, creek in Bille waterways, Degema Local Government Area, Rivers state after $300,000 ransom was paid.
The victims rescued on Saturday, include six Chinese, three Indonesians and one Gabonese as well as four Nigerians who negotiated their release.
They were further rescued by men of the 29 Battalion, under 6 Division, Nigeria Army with support from local vigilante after what appeared to be another threat to their freedom.
The Commanding Officer of 29 Battalion, Lt Col Mohammed Yahaya, revealed the preliminary findings at the 6 Division, Nigeria Army, Bori Camp, Port Harcourt, and handed the rescued foreigners and the Nigerian negotiators to men of the Department of State Security (DSS) for further investigations on the incident.
“From preliminarily findings, they were kidnapped off the coast of Gabon 7 February and brought into Nigerian creeks. A ransom of $300,000 was paid to secure their release before we came in.
“After that settlement, as they were about bringing them out of the creeks, they had issues that made them even susceptible to kidnapping again.
“So, men of the 29 Battalion, under the 6 Division, in conjunction with local vigilante launched that operation and were able to rescue them.
“They have a trolley, Socipeg, registered in Gabon. It was in course of their fishing activities that they were kidnapped.
“DSS are expected to do further investigations to unravel the circumstance and enable us go after the abductors,” Yahaya said.