Obodo Kidnappers Demand $188,000 as Ransom

The family of abducted Italy-based Nigerian football star, Christian Obodo, has confirmed that his kidnappers are demanding about $188,000 (N28 million) for his release.

Obodo was kidnapped Friday by unidentified gunmen in Warri, Delta State. The spokesperson for the Obodo family, Kenneth Obodo, told ANSA news agency that the kidnappers are asking for a ransom of about $188,000 after the midfielder was abducted Saturday morning in Warri.

Obodo’s brother Kenneth, who plays for Pisa in Italy, said the family has been in touch with the kidnappers.

He added that Obodo is not in danger, but his family is concerned since they were only able to get $125,000 to free the player.

His abduction has been on lips in Italy following a statement posted on Udinese’s website that reported the player was taken away to an unknown destination by armed men on Saturday morning outside Warri, the main city in the Niger Delta which is an oil-rich area where foreign firms pump 2.4 million barrels of crude a day.

Obodo, 28, played last season for now relegated Lecce on loan from Udinese.

Confirming the incident in Asaba on Saturday, the Commissioner of Police in Delta, Mr Ikechukwu Aduba, said that the footballer was kidnapped on Friday night.

He, however, said that the police were not aware that the player was in the state.

Adubasaid that everyone knew the security situation in the country and the need for adequate protection but noted that Ogbodo did not let the police know that he was around.

“We provide security for foreigners in this country and in this state, particularly in Warri area. What will then stop us from providing security for our own people?

“But this young man came into the state without informing us. I was, therefore, embarrassed this morning when I heard of the incident,” he said.

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