General of Nigeria Immigration Service, Isah Idris, has confirmed that Mr Ukpo Nwamini David, the person at the heart of the alleged organ harvesting involving former Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu and his wife, is not 15-year -old but 22 years -old.
This came on a day a lady who identified herself as Martha Uche offered to donate her kidney to Sonia, daughter of former Deputy Senate President.
Also yesterday, the Ebonyi State Government stated that it has decided to wade into the case.“
Speaking with select journalists yesterday, the Nigeria Immigration Service boss said David applied for the international passport using the service’s portal after “The facts of the matter are that the said Mr. David Ukpo Nwamina applied and paid for the enhanced standard passport using the NIS portal after which he approached the Gwagwalada Passport Office, FCT Abuja, on the 2nd November, 2021 for his interview.
“To support his application, Mr. Nwamina presented all the necessary documents required, including his National Population Commission (NPC) issued Birth Certificate, showing 12 October, 2000, as his date of birth; his National Identity Number (NIN) corroborating the date of birth on his birth certificate, issued by NIMC; a letter of introduction issued by Ebonyi State Government Liaison Office situated at Maitama District Abuja, and a Guarantor’s form duly signed by one Mr. Uchechukwu Chukwuma Ogbonno.”
“The Nigerian Immigration service relies on information and documentation from other government agencies as the National Population Commission, NPC, and the National Identification Management Commission, NIMC,” he said.
He said the case of David was not an exception as the Immigration Service followed all the due process in issuing the international passport to him.
Jere, therefore, appealed to the public to know that as a Nigerian, David was validly issued a Nigerian International passport.
Asked if the British government or the National Assembly has contacted the Immigration office regarding the case of David, he said nobody has contacted the service.
Recall that Senator Ike Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice Nwanneka were remanded in custody in London on Thursday, after being charged with plotting to have a 15-year-old boy taken into the United Kingdom to harvest his organs.
David Ukpo, the boy at the centre of the alleged organ harvesting saga, had in his post, entitled: “My journey to UK”, said: “On one fateful day, I met a man named Okoro in a building site where I was working for my daily bread.
”Okoro told me he liked me, that he wanted to help me achieve my dream because he saw me as a great person. He asked me if I could work in the UK. I just started laughing because I didn’t have money for that.
”Then I told him no, that ! am not interested. “He just started laughing at me and told me he was going to introduce me to a senator, that his company in the UK need workers, so he could start my visa processing.
“I have no option than to accept the offer. After two day, the man came to the building site again and told me the senator wanted to see me, so we could start the visa processing, then I dropped my shovel and head pan and went to bath immediately.
”Mr okoro handed me over to one young man wearing a suit. He told me everything about the trip and I then told him Mr Okoro had already explained everything to me and I told him had accepted to work in UK.”
Meanwhile, a lady, Martha Uche, has offered to donate her kidney to Sonia, daughter of former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.
In a video making the rounds online, Martha said she had a dream where she was instructed to save Sonia’s life.
“I want to do that because I need to help the girl, she is dying. They have already showed me in my dream that I should help the girl.
“I’ve already seen her a long time ago. Even this morning, (yesterday) I still had the same dream. So, I need to do it fast,” she said.
Asked what her demands were for offering to donate her kidney, Martha said: “I do not have any demands for now. I just need to save the girl’s life; that is the most important thing for now.”
Ekweremadu’ll not traffic minor for organ harvesting —Dickson
Reacting to Ekweremauds’ ordeal yesterday, the senator representing Bayelsa West in the National Assembly, Senator Seriake Dickson said the former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, cannot traffic an underaged child for the purpose of organ harvesting.
Dickson in a statement said his thoughts and prayers were with the former Senate deputy president and his wife, Beatrice.
He, however, expressed optimism that the British legal system would take care of the development as “the circumstances surrounding it will fully come to light in the cause of the investigation.”
He urged Nigerians to avoid passing hasty judgement against Ekweremadu as the whole saga represented a human tragedy involving the parents ( father and mother) and their sick daughter.
“My family and I are wishing the former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, the very best. Our thoughts and prayers are with him. People, especially Nigerians should not pass hasty judgements on him as the facts are still coming out. The British justice system will take care of it.
“I am sure from the beginning when this story broke that the Ekweremadu I know could not have taken an under-aged and under-privileged young man, smuggle him out to harvest organs for whatever purpose.
Ebonyi govt wades in
Meanwhile, Ebonyi State Government,yesterday, stated that it decided to wade into the alleged “organ harvesting” case involving the former Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu in order to unravel all the facts surrounding the matter.
Disclosing this in a statement signed by Dr. Kenneth Ugbala, Secretary to the State Government/ Coordinating Commissioner, Ebonyi State Government and copied to the British High Commission Abuja and Nigeria High Commission London, the State Government explained that it “has noted a lot of distortion of information in the Social Media and has stepped into the matter to unravel all the facts.”
Ugbala expressed “confidence in the ability of the London Police to dig into the matter and to serve justice to all parties and nothing but justice.”
According to the statement: “Ebonyi State Government has deemed it necessary to wade into the issue of Senator Ekweremadu who is an illustrious son of Igboland and one of their sons, Mr. David Ukpo Nwamini over the misunderstanding concerning donation of kidney in London hospital.
“Ebonyi State Government has noted a lot of distortion of information in the Social Media and has stepped into the matter to unravel all the facts.
“From preliminary investigation, Mr. David Ukpo Nwamini is from Izzi Local Government Area of Ebonyi State and was living with his younger brother in Ikotun, Lagos and was engaged in selling of phone accessories with his brother before he left for London.
“From the information available to us, it appears that the said David Ukpo Nwamini is not a MINOR as his junior brother, he was living with is said to be above 20 years of age and if that is the case, then David Ukpo Nwamini might have misinformed the London Police or the London Police was very hasty in reaching a conclusion in declaring Mr. David Ukpo Nwamini a MINOR.
“From the records of David’s passport and testimony of Ebonyians in Lagos, preliminary investigation suggests that David is an adult who has a fundamental right to take decisions concerning himself.
“From the account on Social Media, we observe that Senator Ike Ekwerernadu did full disclosure in his letter to the British High Commission in Nigeria in support of David Ukpo’s London Visa application with the sole aim of donating kidney to Senator Ike Ekweremadu’s daughter and so the issue of donation of kidney was never hidden by the Senator.”
Ekweremadu’s organ donor, serial liar —Psychologist
Also yesterday, a forensic psychologist, Dr. Law Mefor, hdescribed David Nwamini Ukpo, the man at the centre of the issues leading to the arrest and remand of former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, and his wife, Dr. Beatrice Ekweremadu, as a serial liar, who should not be taken seriously.
Mefor was reacting to a Facebook post, supposedly by Ukpo, where he claimed that he was lured to Europe by Ekweremadu with a promise of better life only for the lawmaker and his wife to try to harvest his kidney for their sick daughter.
Dr. Mefor, in a post on Sunday, described Ukpo as “a serial liar and manipulator seeking sympathy when he should face the full weight of both the British and Nigerian laws.
He said: “In the first place, one doubts that he really owns that Facebook account, which was opened less than 24 hours before the said post. It appears that some vesed interests and internet contractors have taken over from where David left.
“What I know is that Ukpo has been doing a lot of deleting and altering of details of his social media accounts since the Ekweremadu saga broke and he (Ukpo) was unmasked. This presents him for what he is – a shady, dishonest character.
“But even if Ukpo made the fallacious post claiming he was tricked to London, it is clear to the whole world now that he lied to the British Police when he presented himself as a homeless minor picked from Lagos streets, which I believe is a major factor that put Ekweremadu and wife in their present travail.
“All the information coming out, including his International Passport issued on 4th November 2021, his Bank Verification Number (BVN) done on 31st October 2019, his National Identity Number (NIN) done on 15th June 2021, the statement by the Nigerian Immigration Service, point to the fact that he was born on 12th October 2000 and is therefore 21 years old.
“In addition, his Facebook posts do not suggest the lifestyle of minor or an enslaved person, but a full blown adult cruising life.
“Therefore, I see no reason any right-thinking Nigerian should believe any further stories told by someone who obviously lied about his age in order to gain asylum and stay back in London”.
“The forensic psychologist and public analyst also wondered why someone, who was supposedly tricked to London on a promise of good life applied for and got a British Type D Visa as an adult.
“Everyone familiar with UK Visa processes knows that the ‘Type D Visa’, being a strictly Private Medical Treatment Visa, is a strenuous and meticulous process.
“Senator Ekweremadu’s letter supporting David’s visa application also fully disclosed that the young man was going for organ donation and declared the hospital for the procedure.
“So, David did not travel to the UK with a student visa or tourist visa or work visa. He travelled to the UK with Medical Visa for a defined purpose and all the current stories are mere afterthought to manipulate and regain the sympathy of Nigerians, which he lost when it became clear that he lied to bring not only Ekweremadu, but also the entire nation to international disrepute.
“Likewise, the story of how one Mr. Okoro met and recruited him at a construction site and both international passport and visa obtained within a week is so preposterous and hogwash.
“His Facebook information and testimonies of his brother and those who know him shiw he is into phone accessories.
“Also, a careful look at the data page of his international passport as well as the visa would easily show that the passport was issued on 4th November 2021, while the Visa was issued on 26th January 2022.
“It is equally instructive that David, who travelled to London since February 2022 only remembered that he was a tricked and trafficked minor on getting to the airport to board an already booked flight back to Nigeria after spending several months in London”.
“Mefor urged well-meaning Nigerians to shift attention from the many lies of Ukpo and faceless internet contractors and focus on saving the life of Ms. Sonia Ekweremadu, who still needed kidney transplant, and also ensure that truth and justice prevailed in the Ekweremadu and wife’s case to cleanse Nigeria the international embarrassment as well as enable the couple regain their freedom and take care of their daughter.