This Day (Lagos)

9 June 2012

Nigeria: Ex-Super Eagles Star, Obodo, Abducted in Warri

Former Super Eagles midfielder, Christian Obodo has been abducted in Warri, his family confirmed Saturday.

The player's family said Obodo, who last season played for Lecce in Italy's Serie A, was driving alone in his car following a visit to a relative when he was taken by unknown gunmen, reports AFP.

"His whereabouts are unknown but his car was left behind by the kidnappers. We are yet to receive any call demanding a ransom," said a family member, under condition of anonymity.

Last season Obodo, who has not featured for the Eagles for quite some time, played on loan at Lecce from Serie A side Udinese. Lecce were relegated to Serie AB on May 13 after finishing third from bottom of Italy's top flight.

Unfortunately the 28-year-old midfielder is not the first footballer to be abducted in Nigeria.

The brother of Everton defender, Joseph Yobo was kidnapped before he was later freed, while most recently the father of Chelsea midfielder, John Mikel Obi was also abducted before he was freed after a police raid.

A brief statement from Lecce said: "We hope the situation can be resolved as soon as possible in the best possible way."

Obodo's brother, Kenneth Obodo, who is also a footballer in Italy and is currently in Nigeria, was quoted by Italian news agency ANSA as saying: "Christian is fine. We are in touch with the kidnappers, who want some money.

"We can't give them more than 100,000 euros ($125,000). Unfortunately these things happen in our country."

His brother-in-law, Obidike Okechukwu, was quoted by ANSA as saying that the kidnappers had asked for a ransom of 150,000 euros.

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