The seven kidnapped workers of MacMahon Construction Company, a contracting firm in the Mfamosing plant of the United Cement Company of Nigeria Limited, were on Sunday released by their abductors with various degrees of injuries.
Our correspondent learnt that an undisclosed amount of money was paid as ransom by the company to secure the release of the workers consisting five foreign expatriates and two Nigerians.
Gunmen believed to be militants had last Wednesday kidnapped the expatriates who were on their way to the office and in the process killed the driver of one of the vehicles that conveyed the workers.
Following their kidnap, foreign expatriates had stopped going to work at the Mfamosing plant of UniCem for fear of being abducted.
A source, who disclosed the release of the kidnapped victims, said all the seven abducted workers were released with injuries.
The source, who said he could not fathom why they were all injured, noted that they have all been taken to the hospital for treatment.
“All the seven of them were released in the early hours of today with injuries. Nobody knows why they were injured but they are receiving medical attention,” he said.
Meanwhile, foreign workers had deserted the Mfamosing plant of UniCem as a result of the development.
An anonymous Nigerian worker in the company disclosed that the company has become a ghost community as even top management workers from the country have become scared of going work.
He said, “Since the kidnap, foreigners have stopped coming to work. Only the Nigerian workers have been consistent. Even as at Friday, some top management Nigerian workers did not come.
“I understand that the foreigners have all left Calabar for Lagos pending when the security situation will improve. You cannot imagine that those that were kidnapped had armed police escort. The armed men ran to safety first and they left the workers to their fate.”
But the Cross River State Security Adviser, Mr. Jude Ngaji, who confirmed the release of the abducted workers, said it was not true that they all sustained injuries.
“I can confirm that they have been released. I was with them a short while ago. It is only the two Nigerians that had injuries while one or two others have scars. They have all been treated and they have also had contacts with their families. Their spirits were high,” he said.