The example of Evans, the Dreaded Kidnap King! – by Tobenna Obiano.

The example of Evans, the Dreaded Kidnap King! – by Tobenna Obiano. 

The thing about life is that nomatter how ruthless, how wicked and how seemingly powerful one may become, when their time is up, they are caught like common chicken, shamed like a rat and paid back in their own coin, maybe killed like mosquitoes. This is the case of Evans, the dreaded kidnap kingpin.

At a time, he was all powerful, feared by many and had the connections with the high and mighty. A careful understudy of his person and dealings will shock many. He can never be alone, he must be amongst the moneybags that are loved, adorned and respected in our society.

A careful or thorough inlook into his life must expose the possibility of him been honored with one chieftaincy title or another, with one church title or another or one bought degree from some of our shameless institutions of higher learning. Sadly, in our society, money talks and who has the most is in charge and often god!

Evans must be habitual in payment of his tithe to whatsoever church or “chi” that he worships. He must be a known donor in his community, atleast amongst his kit and kin. He must be a friend to other powerful super rich men and women, remember that wealth and excessive money unites all, those within its class and reach.

Magodo is a highbrow part of Lagos. This is where he was said to own a mansion. I took time to look at the photos and even watched the video, all are rewards from monies paid as ransom from various kidnapped victim’s families. The land and the property must be out of high heavens in cost. There are CCTV cameras wired right round. The gate looks like a glass prism, it’s a reflective silver coated automatic roller-gate. This ofcourse, must be a great attraction to those who love or have good taste for nice home.

Evans going by his progress and “success”, must have many who looked up to him as a mentor or model. A whole lot must be praying God to richly bless them as He has blessed him. Some others would be so jealous of his person and would be cursing God for bountifully blessing Evans and allowing them to wallow in abject poverty and penury.

There is this very saying, “you don’t ask a man of how or from where he has made his money”. To me, this is arrant nonsense! I say so because certain times, we tend to overlook very serious matters of grave concern and cover evil with yet another stupid saying or thinking that, “once he is not caught, it is fine”. What then happens to sanity? What becomes of discipline? What of our integrity? All these are sacrificed on the altar of making it.

I have arrived to a sit-out with friends and fellow young people, even sometimes younger than myself with no clear source of income or job begin to pop those quite expensive champagne and hard liquor, once I sit in-between those class of young men, especially our Malaysian brothers, I’m always quick to excuse myself and depart from the company because of the contest of “show me your friend” or the usual police generalized arrest and “I no follow” comes at last. Crime is crime nomatter how we wish to excuse or paint same, that’s including internet jobbers and fraudsters called “yahoo yahoo or Gee”

At 20years, I wanted to buy a vehicle, a sports utility vehicle with monies from my savings, but I was sure my parents would not tolerate that. At 22years, I decided that I really needed a car, I bought my first car through a dealer from the United States. It was imported into Nigeria and cleared. The night I brought it home, my parents woke me up at midnight, bombarding me questions from left, right and center, where did the money for a Toyota Avalon come from? They were asking this even when they know I had a flourishing media outfit and some of my books were selling well. Ofcourse, I wasn’t surprised.

The next night, I returned home with a big file and my iPad having some details saved up. I gave an account and presented a detailed explanation including producing my bank statements and receipts of all payments. My parents wouldn’t tolerate rubbish, they believe me, but then, they needed to be reassured that their boy is on the right path. Mother even insisted that the family have more than enough cars for us all, well, I insisted that I need a car for Tobenna and not for the family, lols.

Even when I bought my second car, a Toyota Camry 2008 model also from the States, mother insisted that I was becoming very wasteful and do not need two cars at less than 25. Well, she knew I saved the money to buy it but never knew I had concluded plans of selling out my Avalon to a friend.

Now, most parents wouldn’t care. They see every seemingly good things and progress in finance, buying cars, buying landed properties, establishment of business ventures and building houses as blessing from above. They believe it’s their all time miracle, their prayers been answered and that is why the likes of Evans may be celebrated and accepted into our society.

As at the time Evans was arrested at his Magodo mansion, where he lived like an accomplished king, he was said to be wearing a wrist watch estimated to cost about US$170,000, incredible! Do we understand what amount that was just mentioned, not Zimbabwean dollars or Cameroonian CFA franc, we are talking of American dollars. Conservatively speaking, using an agelong exchange rate of N350 to US$1, that man was actually wearing the sum of N59,500,000 (fifty-nine million, five hundred thousand naira only) on his wrist. He was actually wearing a fortune.

Often times, we fall to the trap of what on the outer look, seems to be great. Only heavens can tell how many persons that have continued to jealous him for all his treasures and goodies, the golden jewelries, the wonders on wheels, the castles he lives in and many more. When the cock comes home to roast, we all know what’s always the after effect, all becomes vanity!

Please, do not jealous anyone. Do not accept that you have failed. Do not be carried away by fantasies of this world. Do not be misled by litanies of showoffs even by your agemates. Do not allow yourself to be lured into doing evil.

The founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken best known worldover as KFC tried several times and failed before finally establishing that venture at above 65years. Today, it exists in virtually all countries of the world. Jack Ma, the CEO of ALIBABA failed consistently and lost several times before rising to that admirable height.

Some can be a Boss and run a flourishing venture as CEO at 35years yet return to poverty at 55years. Some may marry at 18 and not be able to conceive until 39years. Some may graduate at 19 and have a waiting employment. Some may become super-rich at 30, marry at 32 and die at 40. It’s all about destiny, hard work and God’s grace. Shortcuts destroys! Life swings like a pendulum, with its rounds of turns.

The example of Evans has many morals to learn, particularly to fellow young persons, I inclusive. All that glitters isn’t gold. You only see what they present, a whole lot happens from inside within behind closed doors. Many so-called super-rich and accomplished do many worthless, evil and criminal deals and enterprises to arrive where they are perceived as the accomplished and the successful, atleast, in the eyes of the world.

As a secondary school boy at Tansi International College, Awka, we were taught that an accomplist can reach a tenth person or generation. “He who knows or knows who knows or heard of he who knows or has gained from he who knows who actually stole, is also guilty of thesame offense”. Evans wasn’t ever alone. Even so, outside the few ones arrested already, there must be his field marshals, what of his informants, those who provide him with the pool of powerful arms and ammunitions recovered from him and his team.

I learnt that he was happily married to four wives and had kids. What? Really? I mean, so, these women mean to say that none of them, not even one knew of this evil been perpetuated under their own roofs? The whole four of them, none knew of his travails? Ofcourse, there must be concubines, especially as I saw his home wine bar in he clip, making up the dangerous three W’s: women, wine and wealth.

Our daughters, ladies and all women should be very careful of who they take in as friends or unite as lovers and spouse. People should stop acting foolishly. This is why people hook up on social media, and almost immediately, love blossoms straight up. The daughter of the retired military Colonel, Cynthia Osukogu was lured to a Lagos hotel where she was drugged, mercilessly raped and ruthlessly murdered. Yet, our girls fail to learn.

I for one, as a true son of Igboland and from Anambra State to be precise, I’m particularly heartbroken of how this man and his accomplice has brought shame upon us all. It’s most unfortunate that he chose the path of violent crime as a style, making a living out of it and now, caught in the act, he has shamed us all.

Evans is an Igbo no doubt, unfortunately, he is one bad egg amongst many good Igbos. It’s like radical Muslims who turn to extremists, it doesn’t mean all Muslims are evil, no way! Ndi-Igbo aren’t kidnappers or criminally-minded. Truth be told, we are hardworking, serious-minded and honest people. An average Igboman approves strongly of dignity in Labour.

Immediate past Governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi who is often first in many things and today, is the most revered, respected and beloved Nigerian former public official set a great precedence in his war against criminal activities, kidnapping in particular which was then ravaging the state. It was under his watch as Governor, that a law was passed in the state that properties owned by kidnappers or used for kidnapping activities must be destroyed and their penalty is death.

In his confession, Evans said they, he and his group started operation in Anambra, but when Obi’s fire was too hot, they relocated to Edo before ending up in Lagos where nemesis has finally caught up with him and his gang.

The Peter Obi miracle is today a reference point and plays a big role in the “Obimetrics” that begot wonders in and for the State. Obi went ahead to donate about 300 Innoson patrol van to the 178 communities in Anambra State with some getting more than one, depending on landmark and population. He also donated same to various markets, organizations and bodies. He began paying local vigilantes stipends for their somewhat voluntary services or jobs. He went ahead to donate even more to the Nigerian police, military and navy.

The giant strides of the Obi administration is what it’s glories are still been felt in Anambra and it’s good wind blowing throughout the entire of Igboland even till this day. Anambra is remarked the safest State in Nigeria today because of the dedication in service of none other but, Peter Obi and then subsequently, the continuity initiative and project of the incumbent, Gov. Willie Maduabuchukwu Obiano.

Admire if you must, but be cautious that like in a home, only a woman knows the father of his child, so also, only a man who wears the shoe knows where it pinches. A wealthy man also still sweats in a land-cruiser, a rich man still doesn’t sleep well at night. A whole lot happen under the cover of the dark, evil is persistent in the night while all faces shine in the morning like all is well. This is our world today.

A retired top Government official who was once a President General of his town Union once told me on a personal note, that scandal is often celebrated in our society and the world takes it as rightful. He shared an experience with me.

He had arrived for a fund raising ceremony or was it a bazaar in a church, when events were underway, suddenly a convoy of tens of vehicles speed in and parked everywhere and too many security officials jumped down from those cars to safeguard their Boss, the Master of Cenrmony was busy shouting on top of his voice, “Alusi obodo na abata”, which meant, “the Deity or Shrine has just arrived”. Now, what’s the correlation between an idol or a man who takes that as a name and the church. Now, after a while, he asked a small school pupil of about 9years what he wants to be in life, he responded, “that man, Alusi obodo”.

Also, I was with some kids watching a breaking news on television, and three young Nigerians that were said to have made so much money from internet fraud were arrested, by then, they were multi millionaires. One of them, a kid of about 7 or 8years beckoned on me, “Uncle, I want to be as rich as those”. I was shocked. I have also seen young people who tell quite plainly, I want to begin doing “yahoo yahoo”. Indeed, there is trouble. The thinking that money is everything has messed up our society and taken away the thinking faculties of many.

Steve Jobs of Apple had built his company to worth nearly USD$700billion but was down with cancer. All this wealth and his outreach, they couldn’t save Steve. He died after a long battle with cancer.

Fact is, money is very good, infact, it begets fulfillment in life and happiness as it relates to treasures of life, but committing crime to get it becomes the trouble.

Now, I for one, I love my freedom. I want my space. I want to be as free as air and never to be limited by whatsoever circumstances. I want to drive up to police check points and proudly introduce myself with my real name, not another makeup identity to cover up for evil done. I want to always be free to speak truth to power and damn whatsoever consequences because I’m been honest in my words.

Furthermore, I want to always be able to hang out with my friends and enjoy life with them without fingers pointing towards me with suspicion. I want to meet anyone I can, wherever I run into them and proudly say Hi, without fear of restrictions or shame or whatsoever negatives. If I want all those, I live a free, happy and fulfilled life not faking anything or soiling this hand.

The fact that one may choose to terrorize the people with crime and evil doesn’t mean it will end in glory, there was Chiejina, then Derico, later Eddy na Nawgu, ofcourse also, Ofeakwu and now an Evans. Indeed and quite clearly, everything has its expiry date. We know how all those listed before Evans ended and so, one is nearly sure of the inevitable that awaits him.

The 36year old billionaire criminal, Mr. Evans, no doubt may have a fine, friendly and somewhat quiet looking face, but then, even the devil was once an angel before he was cast out and down to the pit of hell. Therefore, he is not only a monstrous criminal, he is plainly devil-incarnated. In his words, he and his gang keep people for as long as six to seven months until ransom are paid and also, the most he ever received as ransom for a single kidnapped victim was USD1million! Almost or about half a billion naira, that guy is beyond heartless, he isn’t human.

The case of Evans, aside been a deterrent, comes fully packaged with lifelong lessons. It’s not about narrow rhetorics or whatsoever of such thinking, evil has been done even against his fellow Igbos and the rest of mankind. There is no peace for the wicked and there is no hiding place for criminals. In timing, there might be delay but never will wrong not be rewarded with same wrong, never can it be denied. Therefore, every evil committed awaits same fair share of evil, that’s what explains karma and nemesis.

Evans has been “caught” and most definitely, he is destined to be “cut!”

Tobenna Obiano

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