The 7 expatriate contractors, including three Australians and a South African, have been released unharmed 4 days after they were kidnapped by gunmen in Calabar, Cross River State, Reuters reports
The Cross River State Security Adviser SSA, Mr. Jude Ngaji, who confirmed the report told CrossRiverWatch that the expatriates were released early today (Sunday) morning.
Ngaji debunked claims that ransom was paid for their release. He also disclosed that all the foreigners were released unhurt without any injury while the two Nigerians sustained minor injuries possibly from torture by the kidnappers.
“I can confirm to you that all the kidnapped persons have been released this morning. All the white guys were released unhurt without any issues, but the two black guys, the Nigerians sustained some minor injuries possibly from torture.”
When questioned whether ransom was paid, the SSA said “Government does not pay ransom. I don’t know anything about any ransom. If any was paid, I am not aware and it was not paid by this government or any of the security agencies. I only know that the various security agencies collaborated and did their work very well and commendably to secure the release of the hostages.”
Mr. Ngaji who could not say whether any of the kidnappers were arrested however promised that none of them will go unpunished.
“In the course of the work to release the victims, the security agents gathered a lot of information about the kidnappers and their activities and I want to assure the public that none of them will go unpunished. I don’t want to speak too much on that.” He said.
Cross River State Commissioner Jimoh Ozi-Obeh said they were released “unhurt” but gave no further details.