The artisan in Akwa Ibom assaulted in video clips that have gone viral has opened up on what happened.
Godwin Abraham was flogged by two men said to be the aides to the chairman of Abak Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom state.
The chairman, Imoh Williams, is yet to speak on the incident.
PREMIUM TIMES has made effort to get Mr Williams’ reaction. The chairman is yet to call this newspaper after he made a promise on Tuesday, to do so.
From the two video clips, the men who assaulted Mr Abraham accused him of insulting the chairman, Mr Williams, on Facebook over some money Mr Abraham said he was being owed by the chairman.
The artisan, in the latest video posted on Facebook, identified one of his assailants as Uduak Alele.
The incident, he said, happened on April 13 at the premises of the local government council secretariat, Abak.
He said Mr Alele lured him to the premises of the council office with a pretext that he was going to offer his some jobs.
“I am into decorations, I did decoration work for him (the chairman),” Mr Abraham said in the video.
He recounted what led to the incident.
“I did some decoration work, three times, for Imoh Williams, the chairman of Abak local government area.
“The first work I did for him was in March 2017 (before he became the chairman). The second work I did for him was during his inauguration as the chairman of the local government. The third one was during the armed forces Remembrance Day celebration last year at the local government headquarters.
“For all the work, he (Imoh Williams) has never given me any money,” Mr Abraham said.
“Each time I approached the chairman in his house or office, he kept telling me that there was no money yet in the local government.
“When I heard that the local government had received its monthly allocation, I went to the chairman, he collected my bank account number from me.
“But he didn’t pay money into my account, so I kept visiting him in his house to beg for my money.
“One day the chairman angrily told me ‘My friend, get out of my compound, don’t you know you are a burden to me?
“His security aides chased me out of his compound. I left his house that day and then reported the matter to some elders in the community, I pleaded with them to tell the chairman to pay me my money which I worked for. I told them that I rented materials to do those decoration work for him.”
Mr Abraham said he received a call at about 12 noon on April 13 from an unknown number.
“The person who spoke with me introduced himself as Uduak Alele. He told me I should hurry up and come over to the local government headquarters, that there was a decoration work they wanted me to do immediately.
“I went there with my cousin.
“I met Uduak Alele, he told me he didn’t call me for any job, he wanted to find out what was my problem with the local government chairman, if I was the only person he was owing!”
The artisan said his phone was seized from him, and that the two men started beating him.
“They threatened to bury me alive. They told me there was a pit in the council premises and that they were going to throw me into the pit, and that nobody was going to look for me because I am nobody and no one knew me in Abak.
“I begged them to spare my life. They said if I hadn’t come with my cousin, they would have killed me right there,” he said.
He said the men stole N50, 000 from his pocket and threatened to set ablaze his motorcycle.
“I am afraid to go out after the incident. Please, I am asking people to beg them not to kill me. They should beg him (the chairman) to give me my money, so I can continue with my work and take care of myself.
“I don’t have anybody to help me, it is my decoration work that sustains me,” Mr Abraham pleaded.