Prominent lawyer and civil rights activist, Mike Ozekhome, was kidnapped on Friday evening on Benin-Auchi road in Edo state.
Ozekhome was said to have been on his was to Estako in Edo State when his kidnappers shot at one the front tyres of his vehicle, causing the car to stop, He and his driver were seized and dragged into a Toyota Hilux pick-up and a Toyota Camry car and whisked to an unknown destination.
The sports Utility Vehicle, SUV, in which Ozekhome was travelling was reportedly abandoned by the kidnappers.
Confirming the incident to newsmen, the Edo State police commissioner, FolusoAdebanjo, said four policemen who answered the lawyer’s distress call were killed by the kidnappers.
While expressing shock over the incident, legal practitioner, Festus Keyamopleaded with the kidnappers to set his colleague, Ozekhome free without any harm.
Keyamo in a statement, described the kidnap as one too many. He adds that this also draws attention to the poor state of security and highlights the state of joblessness among youths in our country.
Earlier in the week, Governor Adams Oshiomole of Edo State while meeting with some civil society groups in Benin had maintained that he would not hesitate to sign the death warrant of convicted criminals, especially kidnappers who kill their victims.
He said that signing convicts’ death warrants was a signal to other criminals that the state will not condone any form of criminality, adding that the non-execution of convicted criminals in the last 15 to 20 years had not led to reduction in criminality in the state.
“There are seven convicts whose cases are being reviewed. I will sign the death warrant of any of them, especially kidnappers, found to have killed any of their victims. I believe that those who kill by the sword should also die by the sword,” he said.
On July 23 that Oshiomhole signed the death warrants of four criminals. Three of them have been executed by hanging in Benin.