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Police seek aid in Mikel’s father kidnapping

LAGOS, Nigeria, August 16 – Nigerian police Tuesday urged residents with information on the disappearance of the father of Chelsea footballer John Obi Mikel to contact them as authorities struggled for clues in the kidnapping.

Michael Obi, who runs a transport company in Jos, the capital of Plateau State in central Nigeria, has not been seen since Friday when he failed to return home from work.

The 24-year-old Nigeria midfielder pleaded Monday for his father’s kidnappers to free him, begging: “Please just let him go”.

Nigerian police have confirmed that Michael Obi was reported missing, but said Tuesday they were not aware of any ransom demand being made.

“We are seriously on the lookout for Mr. Michael Obi. We appeal to anyone with useful information on his whereabouts to contact the security agencies,” Plateau State commissioner of police Emmanuel Dipo Ayeni told AFP.

Jos has seen waves of clashes between Christian and Muslim ethnic groups that have left hundreds dead in recent years, but kidnappings have not been known to occur there.

Scores of abductions have taken place in the oil-producing Niger Delta region in the country’s south by criminal gangs seeking ransom payments or militants claiming to be fighting for a fairer distribution of oil revenue.

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