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Kidnap kingpin Evans causes stir in Ghana government circles

By Omatt Wiredu, Accra on 24/06/2017

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•Kidnap kingpin Chikwudubem Onwuamadike a.k.a Evans.
•Kidnap kingpin Chikwudubem Onwuamadike a.k.a Evans.

More damning revelations are unfolding about the arrested notorious kidnapper, Chikwudubem Onwuamadike (aka Evans), following the discovery that he, his wife and five children have valid Ghanaian passports.

The development is causing ripples in Ghana government circles as the authorities there have ordered a full scale investigation into how the family members were illegally made Ghanaian citizens.

Evans was issued the Ghanaian Passport from the Accra Passport Office on 10 January, 2013, under the fake name Asare Nelson, with Passport Number G0456327 and his age was also put at 39 as the passport indicated that he was born on 20 April, 1978.

It was also gathered that two of the children of the kidnapper received their Ghanaian passports in 2010, while the wife got her own in 2013, all using Nelson as their surname.

It will be recalled that the Inspector General’s Intelligence Response Team, led by ACP Abba Kyari, which effected the arrest of Evans at his Magodo, Lagos home, also discovered four AK47 rifles and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition.

The notorious kidnapper was said to have relocated his family to Ghana because of the nature of his business and has a plush residence in the country.

The duplex structure is where his wife, Uchenna Precious, is said to be residing with their five children.

The Evans “embarrassment” for Ghana was further compounded by the fact that he had been apprehended in Nigeria as a kidnapper and money launderer. Evans owns a palatial apartment on the upscale Spintex Road, east of Kotoka International Airport.

Ghana’s foreign ministry officials were said to have taken proactive steps to unravel the mystery of how the arrested notorious kidnapper was able to breach all security checks to obtain the passports of Ghana for himself and his family.

A government source disclosed in Accra that, unlike before, the process of enrolling in Ghana’s healthcare insurance system had been tightened to prevent foreigners from enrolling by ensuring that checks, including test for language and other needed information were verified.

The source was angry that if it was practically impossible to beat the healthcare system through such checks, there might have been internal connivers with Evans to obtain the Ghanaian nationality and identity through monetary inducements.

To process the application form for a Ghanaian passport, an applicant would have to attach a Birth Certificate from a Ghanaian hospital and include other records and identities that would smoothen the confirmation of his birth or requisite residency in Ghana.

The source said neither Evans nor any member of his immediate family was born in Ghana and he has not been awarded a Ghanaian citizenship either.

“You can trust me that even the President would be interested in how this national embarrassment plays out”, the source said, adding that the system would find out and surely punish the Ghanaians who allegedly connived with Evans.

Indeed, the Ghanaian Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Charles Owiredu, told a Ghana-based online medium, Joy News, on Thursday that those found to have played a role in the issuance of the passports would be duly dealt with.

He disclosed that the “government would follow the trail to find out how the eight agencies who collaborate in the issuance of passports failed to discover the illegality with the kidnapper’s documents”.

The minority in the Ghanaian Parliament were said to be displeased with the development leading to calls for government to investigate the matter.

It was gathered that top government officials in Accra, were said to be angry that the country’s traditional painstaking processes must have been compromised to enable a foreigner obtain its official passport.

The anger, it was learnt, stemmed from the fact that the development was coming at a time that Ghana was battling with myriads of internal issues.

Touted as one of the most peaceful countries in West Africa and choice destination of investors and tourists, Ghana is facing challenges with containing the influx of undesirable elements from across the sub region.

In the North, the country is facing the problem of herdsmen and gun-runners infiltrating from countries in that corridor, while it is witnessing a growing number of robberies arranged largely by citizens from other West African nations.

Ghana’s prisons host a large number of citizens of other countries, especially Nigeria, with some of them serving life terms for serious crimes.

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, who represents North Tongu in the Ghanaian parliament, said the weaknesses in the country’s passports system would be addressed when the issuing of national ID is treated seriously.

Similarly, the Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister said government would roll out the National ID Plan in September as a long term solution to challenges in Ghana’s national registry, adding that some short term internal control mechanisms have been put in place at the Passports Office to eliminate the noticeable weaknesses in the application process. (Saturday Tribune)

Source News Express

Posted 24/06/2017 1:04:31 PM


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