A Nigerian man wrongly imprisoned for a long time emerging from a task he ran for China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation Ltd. (CCECC) has blamed the development organization for surrendering him and declining to pay him remuneration after his experience.
Godspower Ntaka, 29, was captured in May 2013 over the passing of his associate in a burglary occurrence, and stayed in jail guardianship until September 2018 when a court released and vindicated him.
He has sued CCECC at the National Industrial Court over his surrender by the organization all through and after his detainment.
Mr Ntaka had joined CCECC in June 2011 as an associate boss security official and was presented on the Gwagwa yard of the organization in Abuja.
His experience started on a harmless note in August 2011 when he and two different partners were sent from the yard on an official task.
The site chief at the Gwagwa yard had sent them to recuperate some cash the supervisor had erroneously paid as compensation to certain specialists. His two colleagues on the pivotal task were the site security official, Emeka Amadi; and a driver with the organization, Benneth Kalu.
“On the 25 of August 2012, I continued work as normal in the first part of the day and at night around 5 o’clock we were sent by the site chief to Garam to proceed to recoup cash that was wrongly paid to certain workers. That day was the day pay was paid.
“On our approach to Garam, which is around 22 kilometers from Gwagwa yard, we found the street obstructed with woods and metals yet no one was around there. We thought it was the locals who typically hindered the street in the wake of filling potholes with broken stones and afterward would quit passing vehicles to get a few stipends.
“Be that as it may, as I came down to evacuate the forested areas, promptly two shooters left the bramble wearing covers. They said we ought not move, that in the event that we moved, they would shoot we all. At that point they requested that we bow our heads down.
“I was the just one at the rearward sitting arrangement. They presently asked the main security official and the driver to go along with me at the back, after which one of the men assumed control over the vehicle front seat and the other one the driver’s seat.”
He said the furnished looters drove them into the shrubbery. “They continued asking us ‘where was the cash that we were taking to Garam to pay Garam staff?’ We said we were not with any cash yet they demanded that it was a falsehood.”
Mr Ntaka clarified that the development organization tables installment for workers. “So toward the month’s end, cash is taken from the Gwagwa office to Garam, where the workers would now line up to get their pay,” he said.
“So I think somebody gave them (the looters) that data and they thought we were the ones conveying the cash, since we drove in the organization’s Hilux van.
“They continued approaching us for the cash, that we are the ones conveying the cash to Garam to pay laborers. We said no, that isn’t valid.
“They had at first requested that we bow our heads down, so as they were driving us into the hedge, one of them currently turned and said ‘I requested that you bow your head and you are taking a gander at us.’ That was the point at which they shot the driver (Mr Kalu) on the left half of the chest with the slug penetrating through the body.
“At the point when we got into the hedge, they brought us out and limited our options and legs and gathered the N5,000 on me and my telephone and every one of the possessions of Mr Amadi. They didn’t contact the driver who was at that point dying. They entered the vehicle, looked all over the place however didn’t discover anything. At that point they left, as yet training us not raise our heads, if not they would slaughter us.
“At the point when we saw that there was no clamor once more, that was the point at which I utilized my teeth to loosen the rope they utilized in tying the Chief Security Officer’s hands and afterward he utilized his hands to unfasten my hands and legs.
“We saw that the driver was truly injured. Myself and the central security official can’t drive, so leaving the shrubbery, we found our approach to Chikakore where we saw a bicycle man and we argued he should take us to the closest police headquarters and he drove us the Kubwa station.
“On arriving, we detailed the episode and a police officer was doled out to tail us. On getting to the burglary scene, the police officer headed to the closest medical clinic and the specialist affirmed that Mr Kalu was dead because of unreasonable dying. That was the means by which the man passed on.”
Mr Ntaka said they came back to the police headquarters and called the organization and “they sent the organization’s Public Relations Officer to us.
“The Chief Security’s legal advisor kept in touch with the organization however they said how might they pay him when he was never again working?”
How we wound up in cell
Mr Ntaka said the following day, they visited the spouse of the driver, close by the organization’s PRO, to reveal to her what had occurred. He said the organization gave the widow some cash that day.
“Be that as it may, after three days, this lady went to the official of police’s office and revealed that we proceeded to kill her significant other in the hedge. That was the manner by which our adventure to jail started.”
Mr Ntaka said because of Mrs Kalu’s cases, charges were recorded against him and the site security official, Mr Amadi, for equipped burglary and murder.
“The ostensible complainant, which is Georgina Kalu the perished’s significant other, squeezed hard charges against me and others, so as to verify a superior deal from the organization. CCECC later paid her N4 million.”
Regardless of the organization’s settlement of Mrs Kalu, the police proceeded with the charges against Messrs Ntaka and Amadi who for the following five years would be kept in prison.
“I was in jail care from May 2013 to September 2018, when the FCT High Court in a judgment conveyed on September 11, 2018, released and vindicated me of the charges.
“I was detained for a long time and this has left a profound scar on my spirit,” he said.
All through his detainment, Mr Ntaka said the Chinese organization wouldn’t pay his pay while in confinement, or any remuneration after the court set up his blamelessness and set him free.
No Comment – CCECC
This correspondent in a letter dated August 16 looked for the organization’s response to Mr Ntaka’s claims. Yet, CCECC in an answer dated August 26 declined to remark. It said the issue was at that point under the steady gaze of a court.
“We the Solicitors to CCECC Nigeria Limited, and we have their guidance to react to your letter dated sixteenth August 2019 in regard of the above topic.
“By your previously mentioned letter, you mentioned for our customer’s reaction to the charge of disregard and inability to pay by Mr Godspower Ntaka. We are, in any case, compelled to educate you that our customer won’t have the option to remark on the claims on the grounds that there is a pending court activity organized by Mr Godspower Ntaka against our customer at the National Industrial Court.
“Thus, the issue is under legal thought and subsequently denied from open exchange.
“While we compliment your exertion towards reasonable and adjusted news coverage, we prompt that you shun distributing any article that might be disdainful of the court.”
Mind the activity you take from remote organizations – CSO
The administrator of the Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC), Olanrewaju Suraju, in a phone meet with PREMIUM TIMES, would not remark on the particular case for what it’s worth in court.
In any case, he encouraged Nigerians to mind the sort of work they do with remote organizations working in Nigeria.
“We are accusing the legislature that they don’t direct the administrations of huge numbers of these supposed remote speculators.
“The subsequent point is that residents themselves don’t need to simply take everything for the sake of searching for work. In the event that for example one is extended to an employment opportunity where you realize that this administration and its condition are not proper for human commitment and you dismiss it and everybody does likewise, we would normally improve the conditions for administration. However, in the event that they offer it to you and you seize it, for one to dismiss and another taking it, they would proceed with that.
“So there must be that degree of cognizance and comprehension of the piece of the framework, implying that we can’t trust that the legislature will thoroughly take care of us.”