A former member of the Edo State House of Assembly, Festus Udughele, who was kidnapped on Monday in Ubeaja, has regained his freedom.

Udugele was on his way to Benin when he was kidnapped by gunmen and taken into the bush for the purpose of collecting ransom.

However, the spokesperson for the state Police Command, SP Chidi Nwabuzor, told The PUNCH on Saturday that the lawmaker was rescued by the combined team of the police, soldiers and men of the Edo State Security network.

He said, “I can confirm to you that the former lawmaker has been rescued on Saturday by the combined team of police, soldiers and members of the Edo State Security network.

“The security men put up a gallant fight to ensure that the lawmaker was rescued.

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When asked if ransom was paid as the kidnappers were said to have asked for it, he said, “The police don’t discuss ransom. Our job is not to negotiate with kidnappers but to rescue abducted people.”

A former Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Festus Ebea, who confirmed the release of the lawmaker said he has been reunited with his family and was taking treatment at an undisclosed hospital.

He said, “Honourable Udeghele has been released and he is now with the family. He is currently taking treatment at a hospital where I have also gone to see him.

When asked if a ransom was paid, Ebea stated that only the family of Udeghele can say if a ransom was paid for his release.

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