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Enugu council boss usurps NEMA aids as last delivery arrives Headquarters

Enugu council boss usurps NEMA aids as last delivery arrives Headquarters

The controversies trailing aids from the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) in Aninri local government area in Enugu State have taken yet another turn as the last items arrived Aninri Headquarters on Sunday.

NEMA came to the rescue of citizens affected by flood and Aninri falls into the category qualifying for such assistance.

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Sometimes in June, months ago, the agency came down to Aninri and captured data of the flood victims. There, the first problem began.

Announcing that it would partner with the Nigeria Red Cross Society to capture people’s bio data and to distribute the materials, NEMA officials lied that 500 individuals would benefit from the council area. But right there, Chairman Bennett ordered that 100 names be reserved exclusively for his Okpanku kinsmen.

Now, Okpanku is the smallest of the five towns in the council area with a population that is not up to half of Uhueze Nenwe alone. Oduma is nine autonomous communities with 18 large villages; Nenwe has three wards and more than 10 populated villages; there are Mpu and Ndeabor, two towns that both equal Okpanku in landmass and population.

However, Chairman Bennett had his way and 100 names were drawn from Okpanku community alone.

Days later, it leaked that the head of the Red Cross in Aninri, one Mr. Sunday C.J Anyim, connived with Igwe Ben Eze, the traditional ruler of Ndeabor, among others to steal 273 slips which translated to diverting benefits accrued to 273 Aninri flood victims. It was also learned that Mr. Anyim and his plotters mutilated the original NEMA list and changed names in Nenwe wards 2, 3 and Oduma wards 1, 2 and 4.

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ALUTA EXPRESS reported the incident, prompting Hon. Magnus Edeh, the member representing Aninri in Enugu State House of Assembly, and the administration of Bennett Ajah to act.

Thus checked, Anyim and Igwe Ben Eze panicked. The following day 273 NEMA slips were discovered at Ndeabor Secretariat; ‘unknown’ person sneaked into the premise, dropped the slips and then vanished.

In his quest to return names of the original people captured in NEMA database, Hon. Edeh coaxed C.J Anyim to return the multilated list.

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But that came with a another trouble. It so happened that Igwe Ben Eze, Sunday C.J Anyim and their ‘men’ were working closely with the head of Enugu State chapter of Nigeria Red Cross Society.

The man (name witheld), who is from Mgbowo in Awgu local government area in Enugu, boldly confronted Edeh with threat that Aninri would lose all its benefits from NEMA.

Then the matter came to head. Edeh swiftly began the process of bringing the Red Cross henchman to the floor of State Assembly.

He got wind of the danger and surrendered. On September 27, the Red Cross man ran to Barr. Eric Ogudu at Sports Club. He did not only seek for forgiveness and for Barr. Ogudu to intervene on his behalf but also dropped fresh 200 slips he had stolen. Now that everything is released, it was learned that NEMA actually released aids to 700, not 500 flood victims.

Jude Ogbonna

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