‘To get to another level…’
Onyeka, who hails from Umuopeagu, Ogurute in Igboeze North Local Council of Enugu State, runs a mechanic workshop at Nnaji Park, New Haven. He told the police in Enugu that his desire to “upgrade to another level” led him into armed robbery.
According to him, since operating his workshop some years ago, he had not been able to raise enough funds to get an accommodation in a more decent environment and, therefore, resorted to sleeping in his workshop.
Explaining he was never an “armed robber”, he said, he was however lured into the trade by a friend, Okwy, who capitalised on the condition in his workshop.
“Okwy came to my workshop to sympathise with me on how I have been sleeping in the workshop whereas I could still make ends meet if I should follow him to rob. We discussed in details how they go for robbery and he convinced me that I could just do it once and change my life. We left the discussion there while he went home”, he said.
Okwy was said to have returned a few days after to know whether Idoko had make up his mind on their discussion, adding that, he (Okwy), assured him that nothing untoward would happen.
It was at this juncture that “Okwy picked me and Obumneme and took us to the popular Otigba Junction in the New Haven area of Enugu,” Onyeka recalled.
At a hideout on Otigba Junction, he said they were given locally-made pistols alongside another suspect (now at large), which they operated with that night.
“Following this, Obumneme was asked to choose a victim. Obumneme actually stopped a taxi that night at 9.00p.m. and we robbed the taxi driver. Onyeka brought out a gun and commanded the driver to go into the bush and when the driver tried to resist the command, one of cohorts also being looked for by the police operatives, forced the driver into the taxi booth and we headed that night to the mechanic workshop where we ransacked the vehicle removing jewelleries, car cassettes, the driver’s phones and money”, he confessed.
Corroborating his story, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in the state, Ebere Amaraizu, said the gang members had disagreed among themselves over the amount stolen from the taxi driver.
While the confusion set in, Onyeka, he added, had volunteered to take the car and its owner away from the scene, near the Psychiatric Hospital.
uck, however, ran out on him as he abandoned his phone inside the car.
Amaraizu said the victim was later rescued by the police operatives who later swung into action and were able to track down Onyeka and Obumneme, adding that efforts had been intensified for the arrest of other members of the gang.
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