Tari Tamuno

Betinah Okunwa Benson, the mother of Kombowei Benson, the Speaker of Bayelsa State House of Assembly who was kidnapped last week, has been freed. She reportedly regained her freedom at about 10 pm last night. It is not clear if the N40 million ransom demanded by her abductors was paid.

Benson’s spokesman, who confirmed the incident, said that Mrs Benson was handed over to members of her family by the officials of Sagbama local government area.

She was kidnapped at her country home; Korokorosei in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State a week ago by about 10 gunmen in two speed boats.

Benson was accused by the kidnappers of interfering in the affairs of the Community Development Committees in the state. The kidnappers had also claimed to be angry that the State Assembly under his watch passed the anti-cultism bill, thus threatening their operations.