The Flag Officer Commanding, Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Sylvanus Abbah, told journalists in Lagos that the four victims were abducted aboard a fishing trawler within the Lagos waters on December 14.
According to him, operatives of the Nigerian Navy Ship BEECROFT rescued the abducted Chinese nationals from a militant camp in the riverine area of Ondo State.
He said that after the abduction, the kidnappers took their victims in a speedboat to Igbokoda, Ondo State, the same day.
“Naval operatives attached to Forward Operations Base who sighted the kidnappers as they were entering Igbokoda gave them a hot pursuit.
“The kidnappers opened fire on the naval gunboat. There was a fierce gun battle between the suspects and the naval men and the hoodlums abandoned their boats and fled on foot through the creeks,” he said.
Abbah said the naval men went after the suspects, who later abandoned the four Chinese men and fled.
“Presently, efforts are ongoing to arrest the suspects.
“The Chinese sustained bullet wounds during the gun battle and they have been treated and are in stable condition,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Acting Chinese Consul General in Nigeria, Mr. Guan Zhonggi, who paid a ‘thank you’ visit to the FOC, commended the Navy for its prompt intervention.
He said the four Chinese men regained their freedom because of the swift action of the naval men.