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Discussion Starter #1
MOSOP condemns abduction of Yobo’s brother

07.07.2008

The Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP) has condemned the kidnapping of Nornu Yobo, elder brother of the Super Eagles and Everton defender, Joseph Yobo.


Nornu was abducted on Saturday while returning from a night party in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. President of MOSOP, Mr. Ledum Mitee, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that every kidnap that happened, whether an Ogoni person or not, was condemnable.


“Whoever is kidnapped, Ogoni or non Ogoni is a criminal act that should be condemned by all. We have received the news of the kidnapping with great shock,” he said.


Mitee said that kidnapping of people would not solve the problems of the struggle for the emancipation of the Niger Delta region and expressed regret that some people had used abduction of women, children and the elderly to make money.

http://www.tribune.com.ng/07072008/news/news24.html
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Kidnap saga: Yobo’s agent uninformed

By Wale Emosu, Online Editor - 13.07.2008

LAST Thursday, our sister publication, the Nigerian Tribune published a story on the demand by a group claiming responsibility for the kidnapping of Nornu, elder brother of Super Eagles player, Joseph Yobo, based on an e-mail sent to the paper.


Nornu was kidnapped in Port Harcourt penultimate Saturday and in the mail sent to the central e-mail box of the Nigerian Tribune ([email protected]) at 11:42 AM last Wednesday by MATIAPH Group, the group claiming responsibility for the kidnapping, it demanded the ransom of $10,000 e-gold before Nornu could be released.


The story generated a lot of reactions and it becomes expedient at this point for the record to be set straight because of a particular reaction – that of John Shittu – which KickOffNigeria.com cast on its web site on Thursday and which was subsequently published by some print media.


Shittu, who is the agent of Yobo Joseph (brother to Nornu) had told KickOffNigeria.com: “Between you and me, the family has received no ransom demand from any group, and reports like this can endanger the young man's life…We do not know where The Tribune got their story from but I can tell you that it is false.”


It's either Mr. Shittu has problems with semantics; he was only told about the story (in which case he never read the story), or he was only trying to be mischievous, because nowhere in the story was it said that the Yobo family had received ransom demand from any group; our own story was written within the context of the letter sent to us; it never went out of it.


For the avoidance of doubt, we hereby produce below a scanned copy of the e-mail sent to the Nigerian Tribune by the MATIAPH Group. This way, we believe, Mr. Shittu's curiosity as to where we got our story will be satisfied before the entire public.


“It was the Tribune's belief (and it is still is) that publishing the story even when we were asked not to would be of help to the security agencies handling the case,” stated the paper's Associate Editor (Sports) Ade Somefun.


He wonders why a man like Mr. Shittu could have been “so careless” in his reaction. “I expect a man of Mr. Shittu’s calibre to know better. I’m highly disappointed in him,” Mr. Somefun said. “We want to reiterate that the Tribune titles stand for the truth and people like Mr. Shittu should always mind how they react to stories published in the papers because nobody can cast aspersions on the truth.”

http://www.tribune.com.ng/sun/13072008/news/sports4.html
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yobo family appeals to abductors

Punch Newspaper

Published: Wednesday, 9 Jul 2008

The Yobo family of Kono in Khana Local Government Council of Rivers has appealed to the abductors of their son, Nornu, to free him and save them from further agony.

The gunmen on Saturday kidnapped Nornu on his way home from a night party in Port Harcourt.

A spokesman for the family, Mr Albert Yobo, told the News Agency of Nigeria in Port Harcourt on Tuesday that their aged mother and Nornu‘s expectant wife were yet to recover from the shock since his kidnap four days ago.

“Our brother, Joseph, is still shocked at the incident and has travelled abroad to ease the tension caused by the abduction.

“We are appealing to the kidnappers to free Nornu for us,” the family spokesman said.

He said the Yobo family had contributed and served the state and nation in sports and did not deserve to be repaid with the abduction of one of their sons.

“I played for Rangers International of Enugu and the Nigerian team to the Sydney Olympics in 2000. Nornu played for Dolphins of Port Harcourt while Joseph is currently playing for the country.

“Joseph also runs the Yobo Foundation which caters to the less-privileged in the society.

“I can also tell you that our entire family is confused and traumatised by this incident.

“We do not know what will happen to our aged mother and Nornu‘s pregnant wife with his continued stay in the hands of the gunmen,” Yobo said.

http://www.punchng.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200807092574214
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Police arrest 3 over kidnap of Yobo’s brother

Vanguard Newspaper

Written by Adekunle Aliyu
Tuesday, 15 July 2008

THE police command in Rivers State says it had arrested three persons in connection with the kidnap of Nornu Yobo.
Nornu, senior brother to Super Eagles and Everton defender, Joseph Yobo, was kidnapped on July 5 while returning from an all-night party in Port Harcourt.
Police Commissioner in Rivers, Bala Hassan, told newsmen that a few days before his abduction, Nornu was threatened by the suspects over a plot of land belonging to Joseph in the Rivers capital.

The land was one of those given to members of the Super Eagles by former governor of the state, Peter Odili, for doing the nation proud.

Hassan said that the suspects were helping the police to locate the whereabouts of Nornu.

A family source told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that Yobo’s mother and Nornu’s expectant wife were still in shock over the abduction.


http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12379&Itemid=44
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yobo's brother's abductors want N1.2m

Guardian News

A GROUP claiming to be the brains behind the abduction of Nornu Yobo, the elder brother of Super Eagles' defender, Joseph, are insisting that it will only release him if the family pays the $10,000 (about N1.2 million) demanded, adding that they will call the family over the money.

In an online message it replied to local newspaper inquiries on the incident, the Matiaph Group ignored every other inquiry on the reason for the kidnap but just confirmed that it was holding Nornu. The unsigned reply from its site said it was waiting for a number it demanded to enable it contact the family apparently on modalities for the payment, which it said should be paid to its e-gold account that was yet to be disclosed.

"What was published is exactly what we sent to them. We demanded $10,000, which must be paid to our e-gold account. We will like to call his family as soon as the number is given to us," the group said.

Nornu was kidnapped 11 days ago while returning from a party. While security agencies said they suspect foul play, it is still not clear how he was taken and no headway has been recorded over the incident. The police in Rivers State, however, said that they have arrested three people in connection with the kidnap, adding that those who had a quarrel with Normu two days before he was kidnapped were the prime suspects.

http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/spor... brother's abductors want N1.2m&cpdate=160708
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yobo - 'We Wanted Money to Pay Our Fees'

This Day

Posted to the web 17 July 2008

Ahamefula Ogbu
Port Harcourt

The Matiaph Group, which claimed responsibility for the kidnap of Nornu Yobo, has made a volte face insisting they were not the ones who abducted the elder brother of Super Eagles defender, Joseph.

In an unsigned e-mail on their official site posted yesterday, they also denied demanding for a $10,000 ransom.


The mail also sought for forgiveness from the family of the Yobos' for the inconvenience the said mail may have caused them and blamed hard times for the action.

The mail, which looks like the handiwork of a student, said they were pushed into claiming responsibility for the kidnap in order to fleece money from the family to be able to pay school fees which the sender said was increased by 200 percent this term.

According to the message, vices by the Nigerian youths were due to the hard times which poor and bad leadership has foisted on the country.

"Our leaders have led the Nigerian youth into so many crimes namely, 'yahoo' and '419' to mention a few. All we hear from our leaders are millions and billion naira scandal. As one of Nigerian youths, I gained admission into one of Nigerian university in the country which has just increased their school fess by 200% unexpectedly.

"I tried to pay the school fees through borrowing which is yet to be balanced up but some other expenses are not yet met. The school is now in session but due to the fear of missing lectures. I sent an e-mail to media houses claiming to be responsible for the kidnapping of Nornu Yobo and demanded for $10,000.

"I am now using this opportunity to ask for forgiveness from Yobo's family especially Joseph Yobo and fellow Nigerians. I pray that may God exposed those behind the kidnapping and touch the heart of our leaders," the mail said.

Security agencies in the region had after initial investigations into the incident come to the conclusion that it was an arranged job though they stopped short of saying whom they believed organised it.

Nornu was kidnapped nearly two weeks ago while returning from an all night party and since then, no group had claimed responsibility till last week when the Matiaph Group said they took him.

And in a related development, Nigeria defender Joseph Yobo is said to be emotionally traumatised by the kidnapping of his brother Nornu.

Sources within the Yobo family said that the Everton defender has been 'emotionally devastated' by the incident and could not understand why it was happening to him.

"Right now, Joe is emotionally devastated. He is very close to his family and always tries to do his best for them.

"For a member of his family to be in danger is like a knife through his heart and he can't understand why this is happening. He has not been himself since this thing happened," KickOffNigeria.com was told.

The former Michelin star left the country a few days after the incident and KickOffNigeria.com understands that the player was so traumatised he couldn't bear to stay, and keeps in regular contact by telephone, but only with close family members.

http://allafrica.com/stories/200807170208.html
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Kidnappers release Everton defender's brother

LAGOS (AFP) — Everton defender Joseph Yobo was on Thursday reunited with his brother, Norum, who was kidnapped by armed men 12 days ago in Port Harcourt, the capital of Nigeria's southern oil-producing region.

Norum's release was confirmed by John Shittu, a close associate of Joseph Yobo.

"Yes, I can confirm to you that Norum has been released. He was released last night and he flew into Lagos this morning to meet his brothers. He is now at home resting and just trying to recover," Shittu said.

Shittu disclosed that although the Everton defender was relieved and happy to see his brother, he remained emotionally drained.

"Joe is very happy to see him, but he is still down emotionally, still shaken. Right now, he just wants to get himself emotionally ready enough to get set for pre-season training."

Shittu also expressed gratitude to Everton for their concern since the news broke on July 6.

"On behalf of Joseph and the family, I want to say a big thank you to Everton Football Club. They were very supportive in every way possible, especially the chairman, who was calling on a daily basis to find out how things were going."

Norum Yobo, the younger brother of the English Premier League player, was kidnapped as he returned to a hotel after a night out with several friends.

Yobo was forced out of the car and taken by his abductors to an unknown location.

The restive Niger Delta region has seen a spate of abductions of expatriates in recent years. But with foreign oil workers now receiving greater protection, militants and criminal gangs in the region have been turning more and more to local politicians and their families, mostly to obtain ransom payments.

http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5i1l4UDHZVwuTwI-pbVegG571a5uw
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yobo Relieved as Brother Finally Regains Freedom

• After 12 days in captivity

From Ahamefula Ogbu (with agency reports) in Port Harcourt, 07.18.2008

This Day

Super Eagles star Joseph Yobo has expressed his relief following the release of his elder brother, Nornu, 12 days after he was kidnapped by unknown gunmen. Nornu was set free by his captors’ Wednesday evening and he has rejoined his family.
"I feel so relieved and better now. It was a horrible experience that really affected me mentally and physically,” Yobo told the BBC after receiving the news of his brother’s release yesterday.
Nornu was allegedly set free late Wednesday though details of his release has remained hazy, thereby fuelling the speculation that his kidnap was actually arranged to fleece money from his brother.
Neither the police nor the Joint Task Force in the state could say how the release was secured, but the Police Public Relations Officer; Mrs. Rita Abbey said the brother to the victim, one Albert, would bring him to their office today (yesterday).
She, however, told the BBC they had earlier received a demand for N200m (about $1.7m) for Nornu Yobo's safe return.
"We have the phone number and we're trying to track them down using that," she said.
On his part, Major Musa Sagir, the spokesman of JTF in the state, said he was aware of the release but lacked information on the details.
However, according reports Nornu was released on Wednesday night and flew into Lagos yesterday were he was received by family members including Joseph, who was still in the country waiting anxiously for his brother’s release.
Nornu's release was confirmed by John Ola Shittu, who manages Joseph's affairs.
"Yes, I can confirm to you that Nornu has been released. He was released last night (Wednesday) and he flew into Lagos this morning to meet his brothers.
"He is now at home resting and just trying to recover."
Shittu added that although the Nigeria defender was relieved and happy to see his brother, he confirmed that the defender remains emotionally drained.
Yobo told the BBC he was happy his brother had been freed safely. The Everton star, who is currently in Lagos, said he was grateful for all the support he had received over the kidnapping.
"I just want to say a big thank you to the management of Everton Football Club and the fans for their support.
"Also some close family members here in Nigeria as well as everyone who played a significant role in the safe release of Nornu."
He said he would return to England this weekend.
"I can now take a rest after this sad event," he said.
"I have not had time to really relax after the hectic Premier League season, as well the World Cup qualifiers."
Nornu was kidnapped on July 5, 2008 at about 4.20am on his way back from a party at Uyo Street and some days later, a group called Matiaph Group claimed responsibility and demanded for ransom.
They later back pedalled and said they were students who were having problems paying their school fees due to increment. They begged for forgiveness and insisted that they were not responsible for the kidnap.


http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=117134
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Enyimba Chairman Kidnapped

Written by Adeleke Afolayan

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Felix Anyansi-Agwu, the Chairman of Enyimba FC was yesterday kidnapped in the Abia State capital, Umuahia, a day to his club’s crunch FA Cup quarterfinal clash with league champions Kano Pillars.

According to reports, the kidnappers demanded a ransom of between N16m and N20m before Anyansi-Agwu would be released.

However, the news was rebuffed by Tonex Chukwu, a top official with the Aba Elephants, who said in a telephone interview that the Chairman was at no time kidnapped.

Chukwu said the stories, which filtered out late last night, must be as a result of opponents of the club trying to distract them from the FA Cup quarterfinal encounter against Pillars.

However, Anyansi-Agwu was indeed kidnapped and it is reported that the Aba club paid the kidnappers a sum of N5m yesterday for the release of the club Chairman who could not be reached on phone all through yesterday.

Anyansi-Agwu has, along with club owner and former Abia State Governor Orji Uzor Kalu, transformed the Aba Elephants to one of Nigeria’s best clubs after becoming the first club in the country to lift the CAF Champions League trophy in 2003 and defending it in 2004.

The club also won the local Premier League in those years as well as in 2007 and are currently Nigeria's sole representatives in this season’s Champions League though they finished a disappointing fifth at the end of the just concluded league season.

http://www.mynaijanews.com/content/view/1515/143/
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Confusion Over Anyansi’s Kidnap Story

June 11, 2008

The last may not have been heard about the alleged abduction of the chairman of Enyimba FC, Felix Anyansi Agwu. It had been alleged that Anyansi was kidnapped on Monday night.

Reports had stated that the Enyimba boss was abducted by gunmen in Umuahia, the state capital. His abductors were alleged to have demanded for N20 million to release him.

The kidnappers were said to have settled for the sum of N5 million after a whole day’s negotiation with Anyansi’s men. He was said to have been released after his abductors got their ransom.

P.M.News, however learnt that Anyansi was not kidnapped, that he was still at Enyimba’s camp where he addressed his players ahead of today’s FA Cup quarter final match against Kano Pillars.

Enyimba’s media officer, Tonnex Chukwu, said that there was no truth in the kidnap story. “I do not know what you are talking about. I have not heard anything like that so it cannot be true,” Chukwu said.

Interestingly, Anyansi’s phone number has been switched off since Monday night and P.M.Sports’ efforts to speak with Anyansi up till this afternoon proved abortive as his number was said to be out of service.

This will be the first time a sportsperson is involved in the kidnap saga that has been the lot of Southern Nigeria since late 2006.

http://thepmnews.com/2008/06/11/confusion-over-anyansis-kidnap-story
 
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