About 16 persons were kidnapped along the Akure-Owo Expressway, Uso town in the Owo Local Government Area on Friday.
Among the victims was the Iyaloja of Isua Akoko in the Akoko South-East Local Government Area of Ondo State, Mrs Helen Edward, and some other market women.
It was gathered that the victims were coming from the monthly meeting of iyalaje, iyalojas and women leaders in Akure when they were abducted by the bandits.
A source said the driver of the bus that conveyed the victims, identified only as Jimi, was immediately released by the abductors who asked him to inform the families of the victims.
The source added that the vehicle conveying the victims was coming from Akure when it ran into a gang of 10 gunmen on the expressway bearing AK-47 rifles and were shooting indiscriminately to scare people. He added that two other vehicles were also robbed and the occupants kidnapped.
The source however noted that the hoodlums had contacted the families of the victims and demanded N11m ransom.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr Tee-Leo Ikoro, confirmed the incident, saying 10 of the victims had been rescued.
He said, “Ten out of the kidnapped victims were rescued during a gun duel with the bandits while four of the kidnappers have been arrested.” Ikoro added that efforts were ongoing to rescue the remaining victims.