The accused customer, Isaac Agbonavbarehe told SaharaReporters that he was not ready to speak to anyone on the matter.
A young man identified as Chukwuma Okafor has cried out for help after he was allegedly oppressed and assaulted by vigilantes and police officers in Benin City, Edo State.
Okafor called on Nigerians for help, alleging that the abusers want to destroy his life. He, however, threatened to kill himself if nobody chooses to save him.
Okafor who works as the Chief Security Officer at Fouani Nig Ltd (LG Electronics) at Country Home Road, off Sapele Road in Benin City, told SaharaReporters that one Kingsley Isaac Agbonavbarehe, who was a customer of the company, along with his friends assaulted him for challenging him for entering a restricted area on the company premises.
He explained that Isaac came to their company and entered a restricted area (Warehouse) after pushing down a security guard who questioned him.
According to him, he went there as a CSO of the company and explained to him that what he did was not good. He said that instead of responding to him, the man and his friends beat him up.
He also alleged that he was subsequently put in a cell.
The victim added that the customer, Isaac Agbonavbarehe is claiming millions of naira in damages, alleging that the vigilantes he brought to arrest him beat him (Okafor) up.
Okafor said he was assaulted by officers at the police station where he was asked to report the case.
He said, "My name is Chukwuma Okafor, I am from Anambra State, but based in Benin. I work as a private security in LG electronics in Benin, and I am the chief security officer of the company.
"I need help, Nigerians should come to my aid, please. On the 11th of July 2022, I was lying down inside my security room because I wasn't feeling fine and I was on medications.
"My second-in-command called me and said that the warehouse manager, Mr Ahmed, a Lebanese wanted to see me. When I got there, the warehouse manager was shouting at me, telling me how stupid my boy was for allowing a customer to enter the warehouse from the showroom, which is against the company's policy.
"I told him that I need to find out what happened because my boys know this law, they can't allow customers to enter the warehouse just like that. When I got to my boy, Jacob, I asked him what happened. He said the customer pushed him down when he was telling him that he was not allowed to enter the warehouse.
"He said the customer insulted him and pushed him away. Being a customer, he didn't fight him back which is the orientation I gave them. He showed me the customer.
"They were three guys; I walked up to them and tried to let them know that it was against the company's law to enter the warehouse, that he entered forcefully. I told him not to push the security man in case of next time because he was just doing his job.
"The same guy started insulting me, asking me how much was my salary. He said who was I to tell him what to do there? I let him know that I am the Chief Security Officer of the company and that if anything goes wrong there, I will be the one they will ask questions.
"He said 'make Ogun kill me there', the next thing was a slap on my face in public. His friends were also there insulting me, that I didn't know who I was talking to. We began to exchange words, I told him I was going to arrest him. I told him I would go to the police so that I could get justice for the slap. He immediately gave me another slap on my chest.
"I left the showroom in shame and pain. I waited for him at the centre gate. When he was about to go, I told him to wait and that I had called the police. I said he could not go like that after slapping me for no reason. He and his friends began to beat me up again.
"The police station's number I called before they began to beat me did not connect. It was a gunshot of one of the mobile police officers attached to the company that saved me. Immediately that one came, he shot in the air and they left me. Later on, the remaining two mobile police officers came back from where they went to. it was that time one of them advised me to call vigilantes since the police station's number I called did not connect.
"I called vigilantes, they got him arrested and were taking him to the police station. On our way, the commander of the vigilantes received a call from another commander of vigilantes begging him not to take the guy to the police.
"The next thing, the vigilantes turned around and headed to their base against my wish. When we got to his base, the commander who called him came with his men. The guy and his friends were there. They all drank together, the commander of the vigilante I called gave them drinks. I was crying while they were enjoying themselves.
"They called me 'mumu' (fool), that 'oyibo no dey pay them', and I was there defending their company. They settled on their own, I was the only one showing my hand that was bleeding, the guy didn't show anything that happened to him, he didn't say he lost anything.
"But on August 1, I was arrested. He used his connection to assault me; they locked me up in the State Criminal Investigation Department in Benin. Even my supervisor who is a witness was also locked up. When I was granted bail. The same boy through his lawyer came to LG Electronics to give them a bill of N3.5 million to pay him.
"He claimed that he lost phone(s) worth more than N1 million, a necklace worth more than N1 million, N502,000 cash, medical bill of N740, 000 and other things.
"LG said if they pay the guy any money, my security company will pay them back because I working for a security company, not directly for LG.
"Since then, I have been going to the State CID every day, and the guy's lawyer keeps insulting me even in the presence of policemen, threatening me.
"These people have oppressed me enough, I am tired, I feel like taking my own life. Where do I get millions to pay him? Did I see any money? He was the one who assaulted me and locked me up yet he is demanding money from me."
"Nigerians, please hear my voice. I am an innocent man. My salary is just N40,000, where do I get money from? Nigerians, hear my voice, these people want to destroy my life. I can end it all if nobody comes to save me. I'm tired of going to the State CID. I'm tired of suffering after being assaulted. Please, Nigerians should save me," he said.
However, the accused customer, Isaac Agbonavbarehe told SaharaReporters that he was not ready to speak to anyone on the matter.
"You guys should stop calling my number, call my lawyer. You guys are embarrassing me, you are intruding on my privacy," he said.
Meanwhile, ASP Jennifer U. Iwegbu, the Deputy Police Public Relations Officer of the command said she was not aware of the matter but promised to invite the victim to resolve the issue.