By Nuel Suji, Abuja.
The 71-year old American missionary, Phyllis Sortor, abducted by gunmen in Kogi state, Nigeria, on February 23, has been freed.
Phyllis Sortor, a missionary with the Free Methodist Church, was seized on February 23 in the village of Emiworo in Kogi state.
According to Kogi State Police Spokesman, Mr. Collins Sola Adebayo, “She has been rescued and given to the American authorities,” aid, adding that no ransom was paid “as far as police are concerned.”
An AFP journalist at the handover in the state capital Lokoja said the 71-year-old Sortor appeared unharmed with no visible signs of abuse.
Also, a statement released by Free Methodist Church, United States (US), said Sortor was freed on Friday, March 6, 2015, to the care of the mission authorities.
“We thank God Phyllis Sortor, Free Methodist missionary to Nigeria, was safely released today, Friday, March 6, early evening Nigerian time, into the care of authorities and Free Methodist Church leaders,” the statement read in part.
“She had been abducted February 23. We are deeply grateful to all who prayed for Phyllis’ safe return and praise God the family representative was able to secure her release.
“Please continue to pray for Phyllis as she processes the ordeal she has faced. Also pray for Phyllis’ family members who have been profoundly affected by this experience. We are reaching out to them and will continue to minister to them in the days ahead,”
Though her abductors demanded a sum of N60m, it is unclear if a ransom was paid towards securing her release.
“As a matter of sound policy, and to help protect the many, many people who helped secure Phyllis’ freedom, we will have no comment concerning the efforts that were undertaken to secure her release,” the mission said.