Missing Boy In Lagos

Derrick MensahDERRICK MENSAH, the 12-year-old boy who was reported missing in the DAILY GUIDE publication of August 7 2009, has been found in far away Lagos, Nigeria.

Derrick, a victim of kidnapping, according to news report making rounds yesterday, was found after collaborations between Ghana’s Bureau of National Investigations (BNI), Interpol Ghana and their Nigerian counterparts, including Interpol Nigeria.

The kidnappers allegedly demanded a GH¢50,000 ransom before the security agents caught up with them. 

Derrick, a student of Royal Diadem School at Dome Born Again in Accra, was reportedly kidnapped from school some five weeks ago and taken to Nigeria where he spent 37 days in the hands of the kidnappers in Lagos until he was rescued by the security agents.

So far, a Ghanaian and two Nigerians have been arrested, while the fourth suspect is being hunted by security agents in both countries.

Joseph Nii Ayittey, Ibeh Ikechukwu and Ijeoma are presently in police custody in Nigeria, while Ijeoma Onwuegbule, believed to be the girlfriend of Ayittey, is on the run.

Ayittey, who is suspected to be the ring leader and has assumed a new name, Joseph Mensah, in Nigeria, would be extradited to Ghana to face the music.

BNI sources said that on July 13, 2009, Ayittey clandestinely picked up Derrick, who is his cousin, from his school and bolted with the 12-year old boy.

According to the sources, Ayittey, currently domiciled in Nigeria and working as a driver on the Accra-Lagos route, took the victim to Nigeria.

The sources said teachers at his school became agitated after he was not seen for sometime and therefore reported the incident to his father.

The kidnappers demanded an amount of GH¢50,000.00 from the father of the victim, who then reported the incident to the BNI. And in the cause of investigations, the BNI sought the assistance of the Interpol, as required by law.

“The kidnappers demanded that the ransom should be paid into the accounts of Ikechukwu in Nigeria,” the sources said.

Interpol Ghana sent word to their counterparts in Nigeria, who quickly moved in and arrested the suspects.

According to the sources, the arrest of Ikechukwu led to the arrest of Ayittey and Ijeoma, while the fourth suspect, Onwuegbule, managed to escape.

On August 16 this year, Interpol Nigeria informed Interpol Ghana about the arrest and the head of Interpol Ghana, ACP Richard Asiamah Amponsah, dispatched Inspector J.K. Tetteh and the father of the victim to Nigeria to bring him back home.

DAILY GUIDE’s investigations indicate that Ayittey’s mother, Ms Mary Mensah, who is the twin sister of the victim’s father, is currently being interrogated by the BNI.

The paper’s investigations further reveal that the kidnappers, who threatened to kill the boy if the sum was not paid on time, at a point requested that the ransom be paid in Togo, if Nigeria was not feasible.

Meanwhile, Ms Mary Mensah, DAILY GUIDE gathered, had consistently denied any knowledge of the kidnap, and had cooperated with investigators so far, and could be freed if the prime suspect is extradited to Ghana.

A Daily Guide Report