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Anxiety as Whereabouts of Edo APC Chieftain Remain Unclear


Anxiety has gripped family members and friends of the Edo State Deputy Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Us­man Mogaji, whose whereabouts are still unknown while they al­lege being harassed by soldiers.

His family members also al­leged that soldiers from the Ni­gerian Army School of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering in Auchi, arrested the party chief’s son, cousin, cook and security man and have held them incom­municado since Sunday.

Counsel to Mogaji, Hilary Os­homah, who was in Benin City on Monday, to formally report the incident at the state Police Command, told newsmen that the soldiers were allegedly acting on instructions from their Comman­dant and a top politician, who came with soldiers to supervise the “disruption of the election”.

According to him, Mogaji’s of­fence was that he mobilised vot­ers to resist the attempt by the suspected politician, who he iden­tified as Chief Raymond Dokpesi.

Oshomah alleged that Dokpesi was behind the travails of his client, adding “He came with sol­diers and Brigadier General Odi­di, Commandant of the Nigerian Army School of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering (NAS­EME), Auchi”.

He alleged further that “inci­dentally, he (Odidi) is a kinsman of Raymond Dokpesi. When they went to Mogaji’s house, fortunate­ly for him, he got wind of it and hid in the rooftop of his building, where he watched as they (sol­diers) brutalised members of his (Mogaji) family.

“The security man was merci­lessly beaten, while they insisted that he must disclose where his boss was, but, they left with the promise that they were coming back and, actually, on Sunday, they returned in the early hours of the morning and, with the de­velopment of the previous day, Mogaji did not sleep at home.

“They returned with 40 fully armed soldiers, broke into the house as they shot the door down to gain entry, vandalised the prop­erty, smashed doors and windows, the pellets are there, and at the end of the day, they, forcibly, took away members of his (Mogaji) family, including the security man, son, who just returned from Sweden, the cook and cousin.

“They took them to their bar­racks, where they subjected them to marathon beating and torture and at the end of the day, threw them into the guard room, where they are still being held, for no of­fence, other than that they should produce their father.He alleged further that the soldiers claimed that they “have instruction from above to get him (Mogaji) dead or alive.The latest information is that they have even sent a mes­sage to the Otaru of Auchi, that they were aware that Mogaji was taking refuge in the palace and that he should give himself up and as today, over 40 soldiers still occupy his house.”

He demanded that “the rights and privileges should be re­spected, they should vacate his property and his wards and children being detained should be released, unconditionally”.

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