The traditional ruler of Mbutu, Eze Damin Nwaigwe, has regained freedom from the captivity of his abductors, police authorities in Imo State have said.
Mbutu is an ancient kingdom in Aboh Mbaise Local Government Area of the state in south-east Nigeria.
The Police Public Relations Officer in Imo, Michael Abattam, confirmed the development in a statement on Saturday, two days after the monarch was abducted.
“The abducted royal father, HRH Eze Damin Nwaigwe of Mbutu Ancient Kingdom, who was kidnapped on 09/12/2021 at about 0300 hours in his residence has been rescued unhurt and reunited with his family,” Abattam said.
According to reports, the traditional ruler was forcefully taken away from his palace in the early hours of Thursday when some gunmen invaded his residence.
The incident, locals said, caused tension in the community as residents were reported to have kept vigil from the time of the attack till dawn.
Nwaigwe was later rescued – according to the police – after spending two nights in the custody of his abductors.
While the people of Mbutu would be celebrating the return of their traditional ruler, their counterparts in Atta ancient kingdom in the Njaba LGA were thrown into mourning following the death of their monarch.
Edwin Azike, the traditional ruler of Atta, was also kidnapped on Thursday night – barely a day after Nwaigwe’s abduction.
His lifeless body was later identified and recovered inside his vehicle along the road leading to the market square in the community on Friday morning.
The assailants were said to have murdered four other people were in the community.