Hope Dims as Edo Police Hit Brick Wall In MFM Pastor’s Whereabouts

…Alerts Wife in SMS Abductors Hired Assassins, Not Kidnappers

Is Dan Osato Osamwonyi, a Pastor with Mountain of Fire Ministry, (MFM) Prayer City Region 66, Benin City, Edo State, who was abducted somewhere along Sapele Road over a month and a half ago dead or alive? This is the maze men of the state Police Command must untangle, and the dilemma confronting his family as the search for the popular man of God appeared to have hit a brick wall.

Tell gathered that Osamwonyi, apparently trailed to the spot, was abducted May 25, 2021, by his assailants, who forced him out of his Nissan Pathfinder SUV, into their get-away car and he has since not been found. He was however said to have sent two SMS to his wife hours after his abduction, informing her that he was not in the den of kidnappers but hired assassins.

The first message (in capital letters) read: “THEY HAVE KIDNAPPED ME. I BEGGED THEM AND THEY GAVE ME ONLY ONE FAVOUR TO SEND THIS MESSAGE TO MY WIFE. THEY SAID THEY ARE HIRED KILLERS SENT BY MR ROBERT UKPONG, OUR FORMER MEN’S LEADER TO KILL ME. THEY HAVE A GUN BUT THEY WILL USE RAZOR BLADE TO KILL ME AND DROP ME INSIDE THE BUSH. THEY PUT MY CAR ALONG SAPELE ROAD NEAR TOTAL FILLING STATION. GOOD BYE FOREVER. GOD BLESS YOU FOR ALL YOU SUFFERED FOR ME IN JESUS NAME. GOD WILL BLESS MY CHILDREN IN JESUS NAME”.

In the second message, Osamwonyi was said to have instructed thus: “DO NOT DO ANY BURIAL FOR ME IF YOU CAN NOT FIND MY BODY. TELL PASTOR FELIX OTASOWIE VERY SORRY”.

Though police detectives claimed to have been on the trail of the abductors of the pastor, it turned out that the only lead they had was Robert Ukpong, whose name was mentioned by the missing cleric as having allegedly plotted his assassination. The former youth leader of the church has since been arrested, charged with kidnapping, and arraigned at a state high court in Benin while further investigation seemed to have gone cold.

Following the recovery of the missing Pastor’s car by men of the new Etete police division, the case was transferred to the Anti-kidnapping And Cybercrime Unit of the state police command for further investigation. This development prompted members of his family and the church to besiege the state police headquarters on a daily basis to mount pressure on the officers to help rescue the pastor.

The Edo State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Kotongs Bello, a superintendent of police, SP, confirmed that the matter was being investigated, but declined further information.

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