The three men alleged to have kidnapped and killed chief strategist officer of the Dangote Industries Limited, Istifanus Bello, have said he was murdered for bringing incomplete ransom.
In an interview reported in punch, the suspects – Abdullahi Saliu, Babuga Adamu and Abubakar Gide, all Fulani herdsmen said that Bello got them angry after bringing N5.6m instead of the N10m agreed ransom fee for the kidnapped expatriates.
Abdullahi Saliu, aged twenty, an indigene of Kano State, said they were led by one Alti, who fired the shot that killed Bello.
According to him, “We were 10 that carried out the operation and we were all fully armed. We had attacked and abducted the four expatriates while they worked in a quarry located in a forest in Ijebu-Igbo; they were guarded by two policemen who had an AK-47 rifle and a pump-action rifle. We surrounded the quarry, overpowered the policemen and took one of their rifles. We didn’t touch them.
“We then moved the expatriates into the forest where we fed them with bread and soft drinks. We made contact with their families and the company and demanded N30m ransom. We later reduced the money to N20m and then N10m.
“Some days later, the man (Bello) brought N5.6m. Our leader, Alti, was angry and after releasing the four expatriates, he seized the man. He said he must call his family members or the firm to pay up the remaining N4.4m or else he would be killed in three days. But the man said he does not have any number to give us and he does not have any money. After the three days elapsed and nobody came for him, he was shot dead.” Saliu said he was paid N150,000 from the ransom.
The second suspect Adamu said,“I was given N190,000 for my role. I still have the bulk of the money. When the man brought the ransom, I was the one that led the group to take the money. I was able to do this because I have lived in Ijebu-Igbo for over 10 years; I was brought up here. When Alti insisted on killing the man, I told him to take the man far from where our cows graze; I said it was none of my business if he killed him,” he added.
Abubakar Gide, the third suspect, said his role was to buy food for the expatriates and that he was inrtoduced to the group by Adamu. He is from Gumi Local Government Area of Sokoto State.