We are anxious about our children, families of kidnapped ladies declare

We are anxious about our children, families of kidnapped ladies declare
The missing Takoradi girls

More than 200 days since the first of three young ladies was kidnapped in Sekondi/Takoradi, distraught family members of the victims say their patience is running out.

They expressed surprise at the silence of the government and the police on how far the rescue efforts had gone.

According to them, they had endured excruciating mental torture, anxiety and desperation and, therefore, wanted the authorities to save the situation.

The kidnapping

Between August and December 2018, three kidnapping cases were reported to the police from Kansaworodo, Diabene and West Fijai in Sekondi/Takoradi in the Western Region.

The first victim, Priscilla Blessing Bentum, 21, a third-year student of the University of Education, Winneba, was kidnapped at Kansaworodo on August 17, 2018.

The second, Ruth Love Quayson, 18, a senior high school graduate living with her parents at Diabene, was kidnapped at the Butumegyabu Junction, popularly known as Bu Junction, on December 4, 2018.

The third, Priscilla Mantebea Koranchie, who turned 16 years on March 3, a student of the Sekondi College (SEKCO) who lived with her parents at West Fijai, a suburb of Takoradi, was kidnapped at a spot near Nkroful Junction in Takoradi on December 21 2018.

Priscilla’s parents paid ransom of GH¢1,000 to the alleged kidnappers but they failed to release her.

A Nigerian, Samuel Udoetuk Wills, 28, who was arrested as a prime suspect is still in custody.

In all the three instances when Wills allegedly kidnapped the three girls, the police said the suspect struck acquaintances with the victims for some time.

The kidnapper then contacted the victims several times through mobile phone communication and promised Blessing and Ruth jobs, while he promised the third victim a mobile phone.

‘We feel neglected’

Speaking to the Daily Graphic yesterday, some family members of the victims said at the moment the mere mention of the names of the girls, every knock on their doors and every telephone call to them increased their level of anxiety, since they did not even know if the girls were alive.

They said they felt neglected by the state, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the police, since those institutions had kept them in the darkness for long.

The initial eagerness attached to the issue, the families said, had gone down drastically and regular updates on investigations had not been forthcoming.

A father’s pain

Priscilla’s father, Mr Alexander Koranchie, said the families of the victims were aware that the suspect was in court on the charge of escaping from lawful custody, which was not really helping matters.

In a voice full of helplessness and anger, he said: “The level of anxiety is too much. I went to court the last time, knowing very well that the substantive case [kidnapping] has not been called, but I just wanted to hold the suspect and ask him the whereabouts of my child and the two others. Probably he would understand our pain and tell me as a parent.”

He called on the authorities to do everything possible to save the situation.

“The police should get the suspect to tell me where my daughter and the other two are; whether they are still alive and to direct us to where we could pick them. The hauling of the Nigerian up and down in the name of escape from custody increases our pain and anger,” he said.

He said what they wanted currently was a sustained campaign to recover the children.

“The pictures are out there. If they are in Ghana, we appeal to the public to help trace our children, for we are running out of patience,” he said.

The ransom

In the quest to secure the release of the girls and before reporting to the police, the parents were made to pay ransoms of GH¢4,500 and GH¢1,300 to the alleged kidnappers, in the hope of getting their daughters back, but to no avail.

The escape

On December 22, 2018, the police arrested Wills from his hideout on the outskirts of Kansaworodo.

A number of calls between Wills and the victims were analysed and the police established his connection to the three kidnapped cases.

On his arrest, he gave several leads to the police which turned out to be wild goose chases and he was processed for court on December 24, 2018 and remanded in police custody to reappear on 9 January, 2019.

However, about 6.25 p.m. on December 30, 2018, he managed to escape through one of the ventilation windows of the cell after allegedly using a hacksaw blade to cut the iron rods used to secure the windows. The situation led to a 10-day ultimatum to seven policemen to produce the suspect.

He was, however, recaptured in an uncompleted building at Kansaworodo on January 3, 2019.

A search conducted around the building where he was recaptured revealed the dress, the headgear and rubber slippers the third victim wore when she was kidnapped.

That clue gave the police a strong belief that the accused was connected to the crime.

He has been in court on the charges of escaping from lawful custody, causing unlawful damage to the police cell and resisting arrest, to all of which he had pleaded not guilty.

credit: graphic.com.gh

Publish on Apt

Do you have any Social, informational, educational or entertaining stuff that should be featured on www.aptnewsghana.com?

Please submit your stories, pictures, and videos to us via WhatsApp: +233548388489 or click on the icon on your screen. Alternatively, email us: aptnewsghana@gmail.com

RSS APO Group – Africa-Newsroom: latest news releases related to Africa

  • New social compact, transformative leadership will quicken Central Africa's economic diversification December 8, 2021
    Download logoA new social compact characterised by permanent dialogue between political and economic leaders and ‘beneficiaries’, would catalyse economic diversification in Central Africa, said some of the continent’s leaders from various fields, Monday. “We need to think big and small at the same time by shifting from our obsession for foreign direct investment to creating […]
  • MINUSMA condemns the attack which killed 7 peacekeepers in the Central region of Mali December 8, 2021
    Download logoThis morning, a MINUSMA logistics convoy hit an Improvised Explosive Device between Douentza and Sévaré on the Nationale Road 16, in Bandiagara region. Seven peacekeepers were killed, and three others seriously injured. The Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and Head of MINUSMA, Mr. El-Ghassim WANE, strongly condemned this cowardly attack and stresses […]
  • U.S. CDC Celebrates 20 years of Saving Lives in Nigeria December 8, 2021
    Download logoThe U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) celebrates the 20th anniversary of its establishment in Nigeria. The Nigeria country office was established in November 2001 to support the government of Nigeria to improve disease surveillance systems, build institutional competencies, and expand human resources for health capacities. At the 20th anniversary event, U.S. Embassy […]
  • U.S. Consulate, Partners Train 100 Police, Civil Defense Officers on Countering Gender Based Violence December 8, 2021
    Download logoOn Wednesday, the U.S. Consulate General concluded a three-day capacity building program for 100 police officers and civil defense operatives as part of efforts to counter gender-based violence in Nigeria. Supported by the U.S. Consulate General, the workshop was organized in partnership with the U.S.-based International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the […]
  • Coronavirus- Botswana: The U.S. Government Donates P2.9 million in COVID Isolation Facilities in Bobonong December 8, 2021
    Download logoThe U.S. government, through its Department of Defense (DoD), donated two isolation facilities worth over P2.9 million to the Botswana government in a handover ceremony in Bobonong.  The two facilities, constructed through the U.S. military Africa Command’s (USAFRICOM) Overseas Humanitarian, Disaster, and Civic Aid program, will support critical pandemic mitigation efforts in the region. […]
  • ECOWAS volunteers programme concludes 8th regional coordination council meeting December 8, 2021
    The ECOWAS Commission through the Department of Social Affairs and Gender has organized the eighth meeting of the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme Regional Coordination Council (EVP-RCC). The EVP was established in 2004 with the support of African Development Bank and the United Nations Volunteer Programme to build a pool of young men and women from the […]
  • WHO South Sudan conducts a consultation meeting with the Ministry of Health to review the draft 2022-2023 biennium plan December 8, 2021
    Download logoThe World Health Organization (WHO) South Sudan Country Office held a consultative meeting with the senior management of the Ministry of Health on 6 November 2021. The aim of the meeting was to align WHO workplans for 2022-2023 biennium with country priorities.  WHO plans in two-year cycles (biennium) with the current biennial plan 2020-2021 […]
  • Leadership nuggets to drive the implementation of industrial and economic diversification strategies in Central Africa December 8, 2021
    Download logoA high-level debate on the role of transformative leadership in implementing industrialisation and economic diversification strategies in Central Africa ended at the Kintele International Conference Centre near the Congolese capital, Brazzaville, Monday, with appeals for political predictability, adequate infrastructure, especially in energy provision, and a better segmented private sector. High-level speakers also laid emphasis […]
  • UN's top Envoy in South Sudan urges parties to make a fresh push for peace December 8, 2021
    Ahead of his briefing to the United Nations Security Council next week, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in South Sudan, Nicholas Haysom, is urging political leaders to make a fresh push to fully implement the peace agreement so that free, fair, and peaceful elections can be held. Speaking at a press conference in the […]
  • Parliament acts against sexual abuse of young athletes December 8, 2021
    Download logoThe Portfolio Committee on Sports, Arts and Culture will no longer ignore the abuse and inappropriate violation of young athletes in South Africa. As a result, the committee has resolved to host a workshop on abuse, especially sexual abuse, against athletes. The Committee also called on sport federations to revisit their policies on sexual […]
About Editor 625 Articles
Joe Bright Nyarko Journalist/Communication Researcher. Environment & Sustainability Advocate. Managing Editor of aptnewsghana.com, a non-profit news portal with bias towards environment and sustainability issues, rural development policies and gender & inequality.