Gunmen kidnap ex-NBA President Okey Wali

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Gunmen have kidnapped a former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Mr Okey Wali, in Rivers State.

The hoodlums attacked the motorcade of Wali, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN, Wali on the East-West road in the Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state and whisked him away.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PRO) Rivers Command, Grace Iringe-Koko, confirmed the incident to newsmen in Portharcourt, adding that the Police had swung into action to ensure the release of the senior lawyer.

She said, “We are aware of it. It happened along the Obiri Ikwerre area. We are investigating to actualise his freedom.”

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Also confirming the incident, NBA president, Yakubu Maikyau, SAN, in a statement issued on Tuesday, appealed to the abductors of its former president to release him without any harm.

Maikyau urged both the Inspector-General of Police and the police commissioner in Rivers State “to leave no stone unturned as they worked towards the safe release of our dear learned friend”.

He recalled that Mr Wali, who served as the 26th NBA president between 2012 and 2014, “has served this nation in varying capacities, contributing immensely to the growth of legal practice and in the promotion and entrenchment of the rule of law.

“Wali is a known philanthropist who has helped in the development of his community in no small measure.

“I, therefore, hereby, plead with the abductors not to harm Mr Wali, SAN and make a passionate appeal for his release to his family.

“The NBA stands with and assures his family of our full support in this trying period, even as we join in praying for his safe return home.”

Periscope International recalls that Wali was abducted by unknown gunmen in October 2014, in Port Harcourt but was later released after spending 13 days in captivity, although it remains unclear if a ransom was paid to secure his freedom.

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