Ann Okpara, whose husband, Linus, was arrested by men of the Intelligence Response Team because his phone number was on the contact list of Chukwudubem Onwuamadike AKA Evans, says two of her children have had only two terms of schooling since her husband was arrested.
Okpara said three police officers, Christian Ugwu, Idowu and Philip, had caused her family untold hardship.
She said after her husband was detained, she sent her four children to her relatives because she was unable to earn any income.
She said she sent two of her children to live with her brother in Imo State and the other two children to another brother in Enugu State.
Speaking amidst tears, Okpara told SaharaReporters how the three police officers she mentioned had made life meaningless to her.
“I sell fairly used bags,” she said. “Christian and the others came into our house. They gained access to my wardrobe and took all my bags, including my original certificate from UNN.”
She said the police never returned the items, including the sum of N100,000 they allegedly took from her house. “It is only my UNN certificate that they returned,” she added.
“They took my car and the documents. Christian was asking us if the car is genuine so that he would sell it. I was begging him to give me the car so that I would use it to raise money for them to release my husband. He said they had carried the car that I should go and raise another money and bring.”
She accused the police officers of extorting about N179,000 from her with promises to free her husband.
She said the three police officers asked to raise the sum of N2.7m for her husband to be released to custody.
Okpara said the police eventually arraigned her husband with the infamous kidnapper Evans in December 2017 without him being part of the kidnapping gang.
“They – the IRT officers, said that they would not release my husband, because I have exposed them; that they would charge him with Evans,” she said. “Evans even said that he doesn’t know my husband.”
She said although her husband’s contact was found on the kidnapper’s phone, both of them had never met.
She said her husband was a civil engineer and he was connected to Evans by another individual who wanted him to help Evans build a filling station.
Okpara said when Evans called her husband, he was in a drug store purchasing some health products which Evans requested him to buy, adding that both men had no further transaction beyond that.
She said the police also detained her for eleven days and was beaten several times during her time in police custody.
She added that she was forced to write a statement claiming that her husband was a kidnapper.
Okpara pleaded that the police should release her car. “I’ve been begging them to release my car, to release my bags for me, they refused.”
She said her husband was scheduled to be released, but the #EndSARS protest forced the court to adjourn the case.
SaharaReporters, New York