he chilling story of the coldblooded murder of Pastor Blessed Kelechukwu Iwuanyanwu aka Apostle Blessed Kizito of Wind of Glory International Church, an Umuahia-based Pentecostal church, at first sounded like an episode in one of the Nollywood movies. But it turned out to be true.
The pastor was murdered along with his assistant, Pastor Ikeagwu Kalu aka Ambassador, and women leader, Ruth Andrew Eze.
The Wind of Glory International Church where Iwuanyanwu presided before his gruesome murder is a church of not more than 200 members.
It is behind the Ohokobe Hall on Umuahia-Ikot Ekpene Road. Part of the wall of the church is not yet plastered. The back of the church rests on the fence. It has an entrance without door, so it is always open.
As at the time our correspondent visited the church, it was empty.
The incredible murder of the pastor and his lieutenants was uncovered when operatives of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID), led by the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr. Patrick Edung, on October 20, 2018, discovered the decomposing bodies of the victims.
They were found in Iwuanyanwu’s residential apartment. The pastor lived at Umuobia Housing Estate, where the other two had gathered for prayers.
It was right there in that apartment that the three met their untimely death. While the police were sniffing for clue to the murder case, the daughter of Ruth, Sweeney Andrew Eze, reported the disappearance of her mother to the Zone 9 Police Command Headquarters, Umuahia.
Sweeney reported the matter on October 16. She alleged in the report that on October 12, about 11p.m., Iwuanyanwu, who happened to be the founder and owner of Wind of Glory Ministry, came to their residence at Ehimiri Housing Estate, with her mother and shortly left with her in his SUV Infinity Jeep, marked RSH 583 HZ, to an unknown destination.
She added that the next day, October 13, when Ruth did not return as expected, she called her two mobile phone numbers, but the numbers were unreachable. It then dawned on her that something was amiss.
On October 20, she called the police and informed them that her mother had been murdered, along with Iwuanyanwu and Kalu Ikeagwu.
On October 26, detectives at Zone 9, Umuahia got information Iwuanyanwu’s SUV Infinity Jeep was sighted at the Mechanic Village, Ohiya, Umuahia South Local Government Area. The policemen swung into action.
One of the police investigators said: “The mechanic, Mr. Chibuike Peter, who was in custody of the vehicle for repairs at Ohiya, was traced to Umuokpara Police Station where he was detained over a Road Traffic Act (RTA) case. He identified the duo of Prosper Akachukwu Peter, Ikechukwu Nnadi and Fidelis Akubuokwu as those that gave him the car to repairs. They were arrested.”
During interrogation, one of the suspects, Prosper, confessed to killing the victims. He disclosed that he killed them with the assistance of three other men, who were at large.
The police found that Prosper also removed some of the personal effects of Iwuanyanwu in addition to his vehicle.
“The suspect removed the pastor’s shoes and footwear, three gold plated wristwatches, phones, dresses and cash, Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards of different banks and three plasma television sets,” said the police.
Prosper said that he and the late Iwuanyanwu were from Imo State. But while he is from Mbaise, Iwuanyanwu was from Mbano. He said that the two of them were best of friends.
Prosper said: “We both attended the same secondary school and started our gospel ministries together. We were both preachers. Iwuanyanwu was my childhood friend and we were also co-pastors. When he was having challenges in growing his church I took him to a native doctor in Ondo State to get charms to attract members to his church. The charms also help him to perform miracles. I also gave him N100,000 to support him during the trip.
“We started the process in 2013 and we have been going to the shrine to renew the charm every year since then. But when the charm started working and Iwuanyanwu started making money, he forgot me. Whenever I called him for financial assistance, he would tell me not to disturb him, which was why I decided to attack and collect some of his personal belongings.”
According to him, he sat down and planned how to get back at Iwuanyanwu. He hit on a plan and decided to see it through. He hired three assassins from Aba to help him execute his plan.
“I hired three boys from Aba to attack the pastor. We trailed him to his house when he was going home and laid an ambush for him. We waited until midnight, when we knew he would return home,” Prosper said.
The suspect contradicted himself when he said: “I was outside when the boys started the operation. They invited me in when they were through with the operation. I entered and found out that they had killed Iwuanyanwu and the two other people in the house.”
He had earlier said: “When I was about attacking the pastor, the assistant pastor saw me. He called my name and asked me why I was doing that. I went after him in the other room because he saw me. I also went after the women leader because she heard when the assistant pastor called out my name.”
According to people that know Prosper, he is the only son of his parents, but is disposed to criminal ways. It was further alleged that Iwuanyanwu started avoiding Prosper because he was no longer comfortable with his criminal ways.
It was learnt that because of pressure from Prosper, Iwuanyanwu finally agreed to meet him at Shoprite Umuahia, from where Iwuanyanwu took him to his house and fed him with noodles.
After Iwuanyanwu took Prosper to his home, it was easier for the latter to later trace the house.
After murdering Iwuanyanwu, Ruth and Kalu, the suspect helped himself to some of Iwuanyanwu’s property. He took some of the items to his father, presenting to him as gifts. The father, a battery charger, based in Aba, refused to accept the ‘gifts.’
After he was rejected by his father who doubted the source of the sudden change of fortune, he went to his father-in-law at Obowo in Imo State and invited his in-laws to celebrate with him.
There, he left two of the Plasma television sets, rice and cash for his father -in-law and his (Prosper’s) wife, Precious, who he does not live with.
A police source disclosed: “The suspect had no residential address. He lives in hotels and moves from place to place. After killing the victims, Prosper went to Iwuanyanwu’s house the next morning with the bodies still lying in their blood, took his bath and changed into Iwuanyanwu’s clothes. He was answering calls to Iwuanyanwu’s phone. He posed as Pastor Iwuanyanwu, replying to inquiries about his whereabouts and health. He told callers that he was praying or attending to programmes. That was why Iwuanyanwu’s church members could not discover on time that he had been killed. By the time the members discovered Iwuanyanwu’s corpses and the other two, they were already decomposing.”
Police further found out that Prosper, after the murder, threw his footwear over the fence of Iwuanyanwu’s house. The footwear was discovered by the police search team. He was also discovered to have calmly gone through the collection of Iwuanyanwu’s clothes after the murder, picked one tickled his fancy and wore it.
Prosper then went out to bring an auto electrician to start the SUV for him.
“He lied to the auto electrician that the SUV key fell into dirty water. This was probably to cover the fact that the key fell into the blood. He was shamelessly using the pastor’s SUV, dresses, including his shoes, crucifix and staff before he was arrested,” the source said.
“We Have Evidence Of Politicians’ Involvement In Killings” – Presidency
Should this government be telling Nigerians such story or just go ahead and arrest the so called sponsors it truly they have the “evidence”?
The Presidency yesterday said it was in possession of evidence to prove that some politicians were behind the killings allegedly being carried out by Fulani Herdsmen in parts of the country…
It said the unnamed politicians were using criminals to perpetuate the killings.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said this in a statement in Abuja.
The statement read, “The Presidency is appealing to all its citizens as well as members of the international community to refrain from spreading false stories and inflammatory statements concerning the recent herders-farmers’ clashes.
“The Nigerian government is working closely with state governments and the security services – as well as international partners – in order to resolve this ongoing issue.
“The clashes between herders and farmers are historical. The causes of these confrontations are varied and complex.
“Climate change, specifically the drying up of the Chad Basin, has led to more pressure on the population in the North of Nigeria, which further compounded the problem.
“As President Buhari indicated lately, there is evidence of involvement of some politicians using criminals to perpetuate the killings.
“Climate change is an issue of global significance and the Nigerian government is determined to continue working closely with its neighbours in order to ensure that a long-term solution can be implemented.
“The Federal Government makes no distinction amongst the population and works tirelessly to protect all Nigerian people. We are strongest as a nation when we are united and it is through unity that we will overcome this challenge.”
This claim is sign Presidency suffering from pre-defeat trauma –PDP
But the Peoples Democratic Party in reacting to Presidency’s claim, said the APC government was on the throes of death and that its panic-stricken leadership had resorted to fabrications and cheap blackmail against those leaving the party’s alleged sinking ship in droves.
The PDP said that both the Presidency and the APC were suffering from what it described as “pre-defeat trauma ahead of the 2019 elections.”
It said the APC, which it called shattered, and the Presidency, had become what it described as intensely nervous and chaotic over the soaring popularity of the PDP, adding that the ruling party was not comfortable with the desire of many Nigerians to join the former ruling party.
The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, said the PDP was not surprised “that the APC, out of frustration, has recourse to sponsoring of spurious publications filled with deceptions, fabrications and lies against the PDP.”
He added, “The APC is particularly unsettled by the huge successes recorded by the Liyel Imoke-led PDP Contact and Integration Committee, in seamlessly galvanizing alliances among stakeholders across other parties, including those returning from the overtly dysfunctional and derelict APC.
“The APC is further disconcerted by the spirit of accommodation, agreement and oneness of purpose that pervade the alliances among old, new and returning members of the PDP in our key structure across all the states of the federation, particularly in Sokoto, Kogi, Kwara and Kano states, where all new and returning members have been accorded very warm reception.
“We know that the APC will stop at nothing in its sneaky efforts to cause confusion among our members, including suggesting that there are disagreements where none exists.
“What the APC, in its depravity and desperation, has failed to note is that the PDP had, since its repositioning, made adequate arrangements, ahead of time, to accommodate all interests and alignments in this collective quest to rescue our nation from the misrule of President Buhari, come 2019.”
Buhari appears powerless to end killings –Anglican bishop
Meanwhile, the Bishop of Diocese of Akure, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Simeon Borokinni, has condemned the incessant killings by Fulani herdsmen in some parts of the country.
He said, “The government appears either powerless to curb their activities or deliberately, purposely and intentionally indifferent. Why is dealing with the herdsmen a difficult task for the government? Government must disarm these murderous herdsmen. It should, therefore, not be allowed to degenerate any further in the interest of all.”
Globacom, Chief Marketing Officer Hit With $6.7m Fraud Charge
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arraigned leading Nigeria telecommunication firm, Globacom Nigeria Limited and its Indian Chief Marketing Officer, Ashok Israni, before Justice A.O. Williams of the Lagos State Special Offences Court Ikeja, over an alleged fraud of $6,786,674.61.
In the one count charge against the company and its chief marketing officer, EFCC said, “Ashok Israni and Globacom Limited, sometime in 2008 in Lagos, within the Ikeja Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, induced Emitac Mobile Solutions LLC, Dubai, United Arab Emirates to confer a benefit on you by permitting Emitac Mobile Solutions LLC to provide you with Blackberry solutions services, valued at USD 6,786,674.64 on the understanding that the benefit will be paid for, which pretense you knew to be false.”
The prosecuting counsel for the EFCC, Mr. A.B.C. Ozioko, said Globacom and Israni acted contrary to Section 1(2)(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act No. 14 of 2006.
The defendants did not show up in court on Monday, leading to the presiding Judge adjourning the case till May 15, 2018, for the arraignment of the defendants.
The prosecutor pointed out that EFCC has made efforts to produce Israni, who had been granted an administrative bail by the anti-graft agency.
“My lord, we are sorry we are not able to produce the defendants.mAs part of efforts to ensure that trial commences, we brought the complainants all the way from Dubai. We have no choice but to seek a date for arraignment,” the EFCC prosecuting counsel said before the adjournment of the suit.
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Saraki, Adeosun Deny N10 billion Fraud Scandal As Saraki Threatens To File Law Suit
The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, has reacted to a PREMIUM TIMES report detailing how her ministry illegally approved N10 billion for the National Assembly.
The report, published on Friday, indicated that Mrs Adeosun released the billions to the lawmakers despite the N125billion appropriated for the federal legislature in the 2017 fiscal year for recurrent and capital expenditures.
The fund was arbitrarily approved for the lawmakers by the minister in collusion with the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris.
Investigations by PREMIUM TIMES also showed that at least 44 of the 82 contractors the leadership of the National Assembly claimed they were owing were not registered on the National Database of Contractors, a database of the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP). That means they are not eligible to be awarded federal contracts.
A further check by this newspaper revealed that 17 of the 44 firms were not even registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
In a statement by her media aide, Oluyinka Akintunde, Friday evening, the minister confirmed releasing the fund, but said her action remained legal.
Describing PREMIUM TIMES report as ‘defective,’ Mrs Adeosun claimed that warrants were issued before the billions were moved to the lawmakers.
“The attention of the Honourable Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has been drawn to a smear campaign by an online medium, Premium Times, of “illegally sharing of N10 billion from the national treasury”.
“The Honourable Minister wishes to debunk the entire mischievous and made-up report of the online medium which negates the ethics and professionalism of journalism. The article displays a worrying lack of understanding of Appropriation, Payments and Control, and therefore be disregarded by the public.
“The Minister further wishes to state that warrants are issued in accordance with Appropriation and after due approval by the Cash Plan Committee chaired by the Minister.”
The statement however failed to explain the process of approval for such warrant.
The minister did not also address salient issues such as the release of funds outside the budget and award of contracts to unqualified companies.
Mrs Adeosun did not also explain why she failed to conduct further due diligence by asking for evidence that the contracts were duly awarded before she approved the funds for the lawmakers.
Another explanation the minister failed to make is why her ministry preferred to give N10billion of the N20billion allocated for the payments of federal contractors to the National Assembly which has a budget that covers all its recurrent and capital spendings
Saraki threatens lawsuit over report on alleged N10billion fraud
Rattled by our report that the National Assembly under his leadership illegally received N10billion from the treasury, the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, has threatened to sue PREMIUM TIMES over the publication.
The story entitled: “EXCLUSIVE: Minister Adeosun, Saraki, Dogara, Accountant General in N10 billion fraud scandal”, unearthed the irregularities in the receipt and disbursement of the fund.
The report, published on Friday, indicated the billions were released to the lawmakers despite the N125billion appropriated for the federal legislature in the 2017 fiscal year for recurrent and capital expenditures.
The fund was arbitrarily approved for the lawmakers by the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, in collusion with the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, the report said.
Investigations by PREMIUM TIMES also showed that at least 44 of the 82 contractors Messrs Saraki and Dogara claimed they were owing were not registered on the National Database of Contractors, a database of the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP). That means they are not eligible to be awarded federal contracts.
A further check by this newspaper revealed that 17 of the 44 firms were not even registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
But rather than respond to the substantive issues raised in the report, Mr. Saraki is claiming that he cannot be held liable for how funds are disbursed to the National Assembly and how they are spent.
He is arguing that the top civil servants in the legislature are those that should be made to render accounts.
It did not matter to the Senate President that he is the chairman of the National Assembly, and that the bucks largely stop at his table.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, the senator challenged the facts presented by PREMIUM TIMES saying they were incorrect.
Mr Saraki announced that he would initiate legal action on the matter.
READ THE FULL STATEMENT BELOW:
Premium Times Should Have Known Better: Response to False Publication from Online Platform
Again, our attention has been drawn to a publication by Premium Times which unethically alleges without any proof, reference, attribution or justification that the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, was involved in receiving or sharing any unauthorized funds.
The article, entitled “EXCLUSIVE: Minister Adeosun, Saraki, Dogara, Accountant General in N10 billion fraud scandal”, in both its style, substance, and deliberate spin struggles to connect the Senate President to the receipt and apportioning of funds which the publication describes as “illegal.”
In the absence of any doubt, the Senate President has nothing to do with any payment, receipt or disbursement of any extra-budgetary funds.
It is also important to state for the record that the Premium Times article in question is pure and unmitigated false news. A simple check by Premium Times would have revealed that all funds in the National Assembly are in the custody of the National Assembly Management, which is headed by the Clerk, and not its presiding officers.
Additionally, all contract awards are equally overseen by the National Assembly management, not the presiding officers.
We are aware that for some weeks now, Premium Times has had this story. However, they only contacted us on Wednesday, and the Clerk of the National Assembly, after a phone call from the Special Adviser on Media & Publicity to the Senate President, promised to give them all necessary explanation and documents on this issue.
However, it is obvious that in the bid to rope in Senator Saraki, the reporters of Premium Times could not wait to see the Clerk and rushed to publish the story with outright falsehoods less than 24 hours after the clerk made the aforementioned promise.
We are surprised that without any proof whatsoever, Premium Times was using expressions like: “Senate President Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, have just illegally received and shared”; “Saraki and Dogara submitted”; and “Investigations by PREMIUM TIMES showed that at least 44 of the 82 contractors Messrs Saraki and Dogara…” These are highly defamatory and careless expressions.
It is expected, that the Editors of Premium Times will not be ignorant of the internal procurement and payment process in an organization like the National Assembly that they have covered and “investigated” for as long as they (Premium Times) has been in existence.
We consider this as part of the orchestrated campaign of calumny being waged against Dr. Saraki by some political elements using media platforms in which they have interests.
In this regard, for this careless and unwarranted assault on the person of the Senate President — after several previous warnings — the lawyers of the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, will be initiating legal action on this particular matter.
Finally, we ask the public to disregard the Premium Times piece, and take it for what it is, and will continue to be: “Fake News.”
Special Adviser on Media & Publicity to the President of the Senate
Send a mail to email@example.com
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