Gunmen dressed in military uniform have kidnapped Mrs Betinah Okunwa Benson, the mother of the Secretary to the Bayelsa State Government, Rt. Hon. Konbowei Friday Benson, in Yenagoa.
The gunmen stormed the residence of the 86-year-old at the old Assembly Quarters, Azikoro Road in the state capital on Tuesday night and whisked her away.
It was gathered that the kidnappers were yet to make any contact with the family as at Wednesday afternoon, thus leaving family members in fear and anxiety.
A source close to the family said the SSG has briefed his boss, Governor Douye Diri and the State Commissioner of Police, Mike Okoli, about the incident.
The Old Assembly quarters, where the octogenarian was kidnapped used to house members of the state House of Assembly but sold to them after the construction of the new quarters.
Many of the lawmakers then, sold theirs, off while some, like Benson who was Speaker of the State Assembly between 2012 and 2019, gave it out to some of his family members and other aides to stay.
This is the second time that Madam Betinah Benson will be kidnapped as the same ugly fate befell her on January 14, 2013 when 10 gunmen abducted her, which forced Benson, to relocate her from his village in Korokorosei, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state to Yenagoa.
Madam Benson who was 78-year-old then was later set free by her abductors after spending eight days with them but it wasn’t clear if the N40 million ransom which was demanded by the hoodlums was paid before her release as the family refused to comment on it.
The kidnappers had allegedly told their vicitm to tell her son that they were unhappy with the passage of the anti-cultism bill by the House of Assembly which, according to them, frustrated their operations.
When contacted on telephone, the Spokesman of the State Police Command, Asinim Butswat confirmed the incident, saying he will issue a formal statement soon on the matter but added that the police was on the case.