A victim of the Niger Delta Avenger group, Prof. Rosemund Dienye Green Osahogulu has narrated her ordeals in the hands of the dreaded group.
Osahogulu, who is the Vice Chancellor of Ignatius Ajuru University of Education was kidnapped at Bonny Island, Rivers State.
Read Her Ordeal Below:
“I was kidnapped on June 18, 2015. On the fateful day of the kidnap, we had a management meeting, which ended around 6pm. I was on my way home, around Okocha Street, off Aka Road Rumuolumeni area of Port Harcourt, when a black jeep appeared from nowhere and overtook my car. Four hefty men, armed with AK47 rifles jumped out of the jeep.
“One of them went to my driver’s side and shattered the windscreen. He opened the central locks and I tried to lock it back. I heard sporadic shootings from the back.
I thought I was going to die. They dragged me out and took my bag. They bundled me into their jeep and placed me in their middle.
I asked them why young men like them were treating me that way. I told them I had trained youths and that it was my job to do so. The one sitting at the front told me to shut up. He asked me if I thought they were my students.
“He ordered that I should be blindfolded. We drove through a bumpy road and suddenly stopped. I told them that I had N500,000 in my bag, which I wanted to give to widows. I begged them to take it and allow me to go. They said they were not interested in that amount of money. They told me they were contracted to kill me.
The contractor promised them N300 million and had already paid N150 million. They promised to release me if I could pay N200 million.
“They said the contractor was from my university. I told them that nobody in my university had such an amount of money. We were all salary earners. I attempted to pry open the blindfold; one of them said he would kill me if I did.
“I was led into a house with a narrow staircase. I was kept in a room with just a bed and blindfolded. I asked what my offence was. The one who claimed to be the leader, ordered me to shut up. He asked for my cheque book and ATM cards.
They asked how many phones I had; I said two; a blackberry and an Iphone.”
Dienye was left for a moment and later, the supposed leader came back into the room, demanding for the cheque books of the university.
“I tried to educate them; I told them that even as the VC, I didn’t keep cheques. The bursary department does. I couldn’t even sign alone. They asked me where the bursar lived; I told them I didn’t know.
After two days, which was on a Friday, the boy who was looking after me asked if I was the Vice president, I said no.
“He said my disappearance had been announced everywhere. He said police were looking for me. One of them told me that there was jubilation in the university over my kidnap.
I gave them my husband’s number, which was the only number I could remember. By the fifth day, which was on a Monday, the leader came in and started flogging me. He said I should tell him how to access the university money. I didn’t have the cheque books and couldn’t access any account alone. They told me how much the university had in some of its account.
“The leader told me that we the university had N600 millon in one account and N200 million in another. I told him it was government money. The leader asked me to give them the password to open my phone and numbers to call. I told them to call the bursar of the university, Mr. Davis Ojima.
“I told them that he would be able to reach my people. They called Ojima and gave me the phone. They said they would kill me by Wednesday. Ojima told them that he had spoken with my family and that my family promised to raise N3 million out of the N200 million they demanded.
They refused, demanding for N100 million. Dienye’s family eventually paid N10 million for her released.
“I became scared. They went through my phone, looking for the contact of one SA Hanny, who is a contractor of the school. He was very close to the Governor. They called Hanny. I spoke with him and begged him that my health was failing. I didn’t take any food from them.
I ate banana with water. The next day Thursday, they woke me up around 1am. They said I should leave. I was still blindfolded. I was taken to a spot at Ada George by Agip. Alphonsus Peters saw and took me home. He told me that he dropped the money since morning. He was asked to wait for me there.
“The next day after my release, I was taken to the DSS, where I was told the kidnapper, Anthony Pepple, is from my place.
The DSS agent told me that he would be arrested in three weeks. I had a surgery that had to do with the intestine.
I was very sick, and my sister, who is married to a medical doctor, asked me to come over for treatment. I wrote to the governor and he granted me permission. I had that press briefing and told people how I was kidnapped.”
According to Dienye, she learnt about the arrest of her kidnappers last Monday. She said that police called and said that they got her number from the Chief Security Officer of university.
“I cried, but they were tears of joy.”