Extortion and bribery is said to have taken the centre stage at the Delta State Ministry of Women Affairs, Community and Social Development, with the commissioner, Mrs. Omatsola Williams and staff having a fill day unchallenged.
Our correspondent reliably gathered that the commissioner and her staffers have allegedly made it as point of duty to extort and demand bribes from persons filing
adoption papers in the Ministry.
Several persons who have fallen victims, confided in our correspondent that, the commissioner used staff and directors as fronts who extort, demand and receive bribes on her behalf.
One of such victims, a South African based Portuguese, Mrs. Susan De Santos Vincente-Nnabuife, confided in our correspondent that a staff of the ministry whose name was given as Mr. James Oghenejabor, recently extorted her while filing for adoption paper at the ministry’s Ubulu-Uku office, Aniocha South council area of the state.
According to the South African based Portuguese, the extortionist, Mr. Oghenejabor, who properly one of those staff working as a front to the commissioner, extorted the sum of N100, 000 from her under the guise of processing the adoption paper she filled at the ministry.
The Portuguese in company of her husband, Mr. Michael Nnabuife, told HardReporters correspondent that James in connivance with the ministry’s director demanded the said amount from them to help facilitate the adoption process which they claim never came to fruition.
The couple who arrived the country from South Africa said they came to Nigeria to file for the adoption of Michael’s nephew, Precious Nnabuife who currently resides in Nigeria and has been under their care, so as to enable them travel back as a family with him to enable him live with them in South Africa.
Recounting her ordeal in the hands of the extortionist, Mrs. Susan Vincente-Nnabuife said: “My husband and I play a guardian role to his nephew and we decided to come back to Nigeria to formally adopt him so that he can be living with us back in South Africa.
“We were directed to the ministry’s office at Ubulu-Uku, Aniocha South council area which is the headquarters of where my husband is from. On arrival, we met Mr. Oghenejabor James who demanded N100, 000 from us to process the file, when contacted days after, he simply told us that we would have to wait beyond my stay in the country or forget the money paid haven demanded for a refund.”
When contacted, the staff, Mr. James Oghenejabor, however debunked the claims of extorting the sum of N100, 000 from the Portuguese but admitted collecting the sum of N100, 000 which was paid into his personal UBA bank account. “I charged her N50, 000 for the adoption process and an extra N50, 000 for myself.”
According to Mr. Oghenejabor, “It is not extortion, the file has not been signed by the director for it to go to the commissioner. Normally there is a charge for adoption process which is N50, 000 but I charged N100, 000. I only added my own N 50, 000 and they are saying I should refund the money. This is a normal process in the office.”
It was reliably learnt that the commissioner, directors and staff of the Ministry have continued to extort and receive bribes from persons coming to file adoption papers in the ministry either at its headquarters or ministry’s offices at the local government areas of the state.
As at the time of filing in this report, all efforts to hear from the women affairs commissioner, Mrs. Omatsola Williams, proved unsuccessful as all calls and text messages to her mobile line were not responded to.