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Ekweremadu: Documents Show Alleged Trafficked Minor is 21 Years Old, But Exploitation an Issues

todayJune 25, 2022

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Peter Obi prays for deputy senate president to overcome trial

Fresh facts on the ongoing trial of former Deputy President of the Nigerian Senate, Ike Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice, in the United Kingdom for alleged organ harvesting show that the alleged trafficked minor, David Ukpo David Nwamini, is well over 21 years.

They were arraigned before a UK Magistrate court last Thursday.

The senator and his wife got legal representation and begged the court for bail, stating that their passports had been seized but the judge denied them bail and remanded them in custody till July 7, 2022, pending further investigation.

Only persons below age 18 are considered minors in the United Kingdom.

But the issue of whether the Ekweremadu’s acted in a manner that amounts to exploiting Nwamini remains strong in the court.

At the court hearing, Prosecutor Damla Ayas stated: “It is conspiracy in relation to human trafficking offences for the purposes of organ harvesting. The victim in this case is 15 years old. They, the couple, were interviewed at the police station. Both of the defendants have provided a prepared statement.

“Ekweremadu, in his prepared statement, denied allegations of human trafficking. He said he did not at any stage arrange transport for anyone with intention to exploit them.

His wife similarly denied the allegations in her prepared statement.

However, new documents have shown that the alleged minor might have lied about his age.

Ukpo’s international passport with number B00569974 issued on November 4, 2021, shows that he was actually born on October 12, 2000. It means he is aged 21, hence and will clock 22 on October 12, 2022.

His National Identity Number (NIN) on the passport is 19438077110. Further investigation shows that his NIN registration, which was done on June 15, 2022, has October 12, 2000 as his birthday. 

Also, Ukpo’s Bank Verification Number (BVN), which was enrolled at the Ikotun branch of Stanbic IBTC Bank on January 31, 2019, equally the same birthday as his international passport and NIN.

A letter had also surfaced on Thursday showing that Ekweremadu wrote to the UK High Commission in Nigeria in support of the Ukpo’s visa application wherein he also stated the purpose of the UK trip and hospital to be used.

Consequent upon the visa application, Ukpo was granted a Type/Category D visa, where the purpose of visit is stated as “Private Medical Treatment”.

Meanwhile contrary to media reports (not THISDAY) that Ekweremadu travelled with David on the trip during which he was arrested, the prospective donor actually arrived London in February 2022.

However, following series of medical examinations to determine the suitability of the donor’s organ to the receiver, it was established that they did not match; hence the procedure was called off.

David was therefore billed return to Nigeria in May.

Contrary to the claim that it was the hospital that invited the police into matter when they allegedly discovered that he was a “minor”, investigation showed that it was actually Ukpo, who on getting to the airport on the day of his departure from the UK, allegedly told the police that he was a 15-year, Lagos-based homeless minor trafficked to the UK by the duo of Ekweremadu and the wife for organ harvest.

He was said to have further alleged that he was being forcibly taken back to Nigeria.

It is alleged that he might have taken the step with a view to securing asylum status in European nation. 

A source familiar with the development said: “It is unfortunate how some people desperately want to benefit from other people’s misfortunes.

“Here is a couple desperately, but legitimately doing everything they can to save a daughter whose life is on line, but only for someone to want to put them take them to hell for his selfish benefit.

“This young man has been in the UK since February 2022 undergoing necessary medical investigations and didn’t deem it necessary to report to the UK authorities.

“He suddenly came to the realisation of being ‘trafficked’ and ‘enslaved’ for ‘organ harvest’ as an alleged ‘minor’ on the set day for him to depart the UK back to Nigeria, and in this case, at the airport.

“The fact that Ekweremadu wrote to the UK High Commission stating the purpose of the visit by the donor clearly shows that there could not have been mischief or motivation towards crime in the first place. Isn’t the UK High Commission the representative of the UK Sovereign in Nigeria?

“If they suspected anything shady, they would have corrected it or even denied the visa or reached the lawmaker, who requested them to contact him should the need arise”.

Meanwhile, information and activities on donor’s page do not suggest that he was homeless in Nigeria or was enslaved in London.

Information on his Facebook show that he hails from Ebonyi State, but lives in Lagos in Lagos where he is into phone business.

Also, posts on his Facebook Page showed him in a cozy environment having fun.

It was however observed that there have been a lot of alterations on his Facebook account since the early hours of Friday.

Peter Obi Prays for Ekweremadu

The presidential candidate of Labour Party, Peter Obi yesterday expressed support and prayed for Ekweremadu and his wife, over the trial.

In a tweet yesterday, Obi expressed concern over the allegation, saying justice should be served on the case.

“My family and I are with the Ekweremadu’s over their travail. We join all men of goodwill in praying for the healing of their daughter and commit them into God’s hand for justice to be done,” Obi tweeted.

A statement by the Metropolitan Police on Thursday said, “A woman and a man were charged today (Thursday) with conspiring to arrange the travel of a child into the UK to harvest organs.

“The charges follow an investigation by the Metropolitan Police’s Specialist Crime team.

“Beatrice Nwanneka Ekweremadu, 55 (10.9.66) of Nigeria is charged with conspiracy to arrange/facilitate travel of another person with a view to exploitation, namely organ harvesting.

“Ike Ekweremadu, 60 (12.05.62) of Nigeria is charged with conspiracy to arrange/facilitate the travel of another person with a view to exploitation, namely organ harvesting.”

The investigation was launched after detectives were alerted to potential offences under modern slavery legislation in May 2022, the force said.

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