Tag Archive | "Brigadier Olajide"

General Brutalises IG’s in- law at Abuja Airport

 A Nigerian resident in the United States, who was beaten by soldiers at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport in Abuja on Sunday has concluded arrangement to sue Jacob Olajide, a retired Brigadier General, who ordered his maltreatment.

He also plans to sue Arik Airline for complicity.

Uche Onyeanusi, brother in-law to the Inspector General of Police, Ogbonna Onovo, was beaten into coma by two soldiers on alighting from Arik flight W3161 which he boarded in Lagos.

Onyeanusi told Daily Independent that disagreement broke out between him and Olajide where they queued along with other intending passengers to buy flight tickets at the Arik counter in Lagos.

Onyeanusi said he came to Nigeria to spend the holidays with his relatives and attend to other issues.

He narrated that he incurred the wrath of Olajide when he prevented him from jumping the queue, a challenge which led to an exchange of words between them, during which Olajide threatened to deal with him severely on their arrival in Abuja.

Onyeanusi said Olajide’s aides descended on him and gave him the beating of his life immediately he disembarked from the plane. Other passengers looked on in awe as he was being pummelled.

An eyewitness who was on the flight, Michael Ihemaguba, a medical practitioner also based in the U.S. (and an American citizen like Onyeanusi), said he was surprised that a policeman at the scene prevented him (Ihemaguba) and others from rescuing the victim.

He recounted that Onyeanusi ran into the office of the State Security Service (SSS) when he was pursued by the soldiers, but the door of the office was forced open by the soldiers as the lone female SSS operative in the office attempted shutting the door against them.

Ihemaguba said he and other passengers had to risk their lives to save him from being beaten to death, as they rushed and held the two soldiers when one of them took a bottle and was about to smash it on the head of Onyeanusi who lay on the ground bloodied and unconscious.

The soldiers took Olajide’s luggage and left the airport without anybody arresting them after Olajide had identified himself as a Brigadier General to airport security personnel.

The incident was caught on tape by the airport security, and was reported to the airport police.

Onyeanusi was revived by Ihemaguba and the airport medical team.

Arik employees who witnessed the incident made statements to the SSS before proceeding to the police station.

However, efforts by the police to unravel the true identity of the soldiers for prosecution are being impeded by Arik and the airport security, both of which refused to co-operate with the police officer investigating the case.

Arik reportedly told the officer that it is not bound by law to release its passenger manifest through which the name of Olajide could be ascertained.

The airport security also allegedly refused to release the video tape of the incident.

It was learnt that the military Commandant at the airport has been shown the tape and has identified the culprit but refused to disclose the true identity of Olajide.

After watching the tape, he told Onyeanusi and the police that the name of the General was wrong, but confirmed that the man is no longer in service .

Calls made to the commandant’s mobile telephone line were picked by his aide who said his boss was not available for comment.

It was learnt that the policeman investigating the case made an official application to the airport security to release the tape, but the request was denied.

Pressure is being mounted on Onyeanusi to drop the case as he was told to see some serving senior Army officers who are prepared to settle the matter amicably.

But he has refused to bulge, and stated his readiness to pursue the matter to a logical conclusion by getting a lawyer to sue Arik for failing to release the passenger manifest to the police.

He said he will also report the incident to the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria.

However, Arik Spokesman, Banji Ola, argued that the airline should not be blamed because it did not have control over what happened on the tarmac.

He also said for security reasons, Arik cannot be compelled by individuals to release its passenger manifest.

In line with international standards, only the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) or the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) can compel an airline to release its passenger manifest, Ola explained

 Written by Rotimi Akinwumi

Posted in Crime, Nigerian NewsComments (0)

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