Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Police free Lecce player Obodo

11 June 2012, 07:49

 Lagos - Police on Sunday night rescued midfielder Christian Obodo, a player for Italy's Udinese football club now on loan to Lecce, a day after he was abducted in Nigeria's oil-rich southern delta, a police spokesperson said.

Delta state police spokesperson Charles Muka said officers freed Obodo and arrested several of his suspected kidnappers, who had not even left the oil-producing state where he was abducted on Saturday. Muka declined to say what led police to the kidnappers. Police and security agencies in Nigeria have traced suspects using their mobile phone transmissions in the past.

The kidnappers made contact with the international football player's family in Warri shortly afterward abducting him, making a ransom demand of $187 500, Muka said.

Lecce was relegated to a second-tier league this season, while Udinese finished third in Serie A this season.

Kidnappings remain common in the Niger Delta, a region that provides about 2.4 million barrels of oil a day for Nigeria. Gangs and militants once only targeted foreign oil workers, but in recent years have increasingly gone after middle- and upper-class Nigerians there.

Nigerian football players and their families have been targeted in the past by kidnappers. In August, two Nigerian soldiers and others took part in the kidnapping of Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel's father from Jos in central Nigeria, and at one point demanded a $4bn ransom they considered "chicken change" for the team, officials said. Authorities later traced Mikel's father to the northern city of Kano and freed him.

In 2008, gunmen abducted the younger brother of Everton defender Joseph Yobo as he left a nightclub in Port Harcourt, the delta's largest city. The brother was released unharmed about two weeks later, though it was unclear if a ransom had been paid.

- AP


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...