By Osaigbovo Iguobaro, Benin
Chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Oredo Ward 8 in Oredo Local Government Area, Mr Sunday Erhabor has been arrested by police operatives in Edo State for allegedly obtaining bank details and collating names of Nigerians for a non-existent economic stimulus package to cushion the effects of COVID-19 partial lockdown in the State.
He was taken into custody on Tuesday after the State government reportedly petitioned the operatives over the ‘fake payment scheme’ of N10,000 to vulnerable Nigerians’.
Other APC executives, linked to the scam including a leader of the party in Oredo Local Government, Mr Alari were said to have fled when they got wind of Mr Sunday Erhabor’s arrest.
A leader of the party, alleged that Erhabor lured his Clients to subscribe to the scheme which he claimed was ordered by governor Godwin Obaseki for the benefits.
Another source who craved for anonymity absolve Erhabor of any wrong doing, adding that “he only acted on the instruction of the local government APC executives who claimed to have the backing of the State government”.
Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie had distanced the state government from scheme and described it as the handiwork of unscrupulous elements out to defraud unsuspecting residents.
Osagie said: “the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration’s relief package is meant for the poor and vulnerable persons only, the details of which would be made public soon.
“And I want to clarify that the state government has not recruited anybody or group of persons to collate names or bank details on its behalf. Members of the public are advised to disregard the message.”
According to the governor’s aide, “The economic stimulus that has been developed by the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration to cushion the economic effect of Coronavirus (COVID -19) outbreak in the state is targeted at the poor and vulnerable persons”.
“We would explore the right channels in reaching out to these persons when the exercise kicks off.”
Spokesman of the Nigeria police, Edo Command, DSP Chidi Nwabuzor said he was yet to be briefed on the matter.