The midfielder who has not played for the Eagles in recent years was early Saturday kidnapped by four unidentified gunmen in Warri, Delta State.
The state Police Spokesman, Mr Charles Muka who spoke with The PUNCH on the telephone Sunday night said that several arrests were made in the operation carried out at Emevor in Isoko North Local Government Area of Delta State where the kidnappers had apparently taken him to from Warri.
He said, “We are actually on from way from the operation location to the headquarters with Obodo. Every other detail will be given tomorrow morning.”
The Police officer said that the footballer was rescued unhurt and that no ransom was paid to the kidnappers as they had demanded. The rescue operation was carried out hours after the Police made a general appeal for information on the crime.
The pledge came amidst reports that the kidnappers were demanding that their ransom should be paid in hard currency.
Obodo, who plays for Italian club side, Udinese, but currently on loan to Lecce football club was said to have arrived the country few weeks ago after the conclusion of the Serie A season. The Italy based midfielder was driving in his car with a customised plate number ‘Obodo 5’ when the kidnappers crossed his car and forcibly took him away.
After the initial silence by the Police in Delta, the command came up with confirmation on Sunday afternoon when they assured that they were working very hard to get Obodo released as quickly as possible.
The statement read, “The Delta state Police command confirms the kidnap of Christian Obodo, a retired football star, in Warri. He was kidnapped yesterday (Saturday) by a four-man gang at 0845 hours near Zion Prayer Ministry, Ekpan, by a gang operating in a Toyota Camry car with a yet to be ascertained registration number.
“The international footballer came into town a few days ago and the commissioner is already making diligent and concerted efforts to ensure his prompt rescue.”
Obodo’s brother, Kenneth Obodo, who is also a footballer in Italy and is currently in Nigeria, was quoted by Sunday afternoon before the rescue operation 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. Unfortunately these things happen in our country.”