Geoffrey Anyanwu, Enugu
The continuous disappearance of the immediate past Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs, Indigenous Artworks, Culture and Tourism in Anambra state, Dr Christian Madubuko, was yesterday greeted with a major outrage.
Madubuko was allegedly kidnapped in the state on January 13, by unknown gunmen few weeks after resigning his appointment with the Anambra state government where he alleged corruption in the system.
Fourteen days after, nothing has been heard of the whereabouts of the former Commissioner necessitating the outcry by his wife, Mrs. Chioma Madubuko family members and the Nigerian community in Australia from where he came back to serve his state.
Madubuko resigned on December 11, 2020, had alleged threats to his life and sabotage against the administration of Governor Willie Obiano in the state and urged the governor “to take charge of his administration.”
Speaking from her base in Australia yesterday via telephone, his wife, Chioma lamented that she had become a physiological wreck as she had not heard any news about her husband and every effort to trace him had proved futile.
Narrating her story she said, “On the 13th January 2021, my husband called me and we talked at length. We discussed the way husband and wife talks and he told me he is going to have a meeting with the SSG and the APGA Secretary, that after the meeting he is going to call me back for us to agree on when he will be coming back to Australia.
“I waited for him to call at the time he said he would be calling but he could not. I had to call him back, his phone rang but he didn’t pick. I called again, he didn’t pick and after about a two hours interval, I called again, he didn’t pick his call. I said probably he was busy and I slept off. The next day in the morning, I woke up, I had a dream and I brought my phone and called his number but the two numbers were switched off.
“I now decided to call some of his friends. They told me they saw him in the afternoon but no time was mentioned. They said they would call and they called and said the number was switched off and they said I should not bother that it could be a low battery. So I relaxed and waited for him to call until the entire day, I didn’t hear from him. So the following day, I had to call back to his friends to say I have not heard from him and they said, I should not worry that they will even call other friends. So after sometime, I called him again and the phone did not ring so I became worried and started calling home.
“ I was troubling his friends to get to him, nothing tangible was coming out of it. On January 15, I opened my social media and saw that Honorable Christian Madubuko, the Honourable Commissioner has been kidnapped by unknown gunmen. I became shocked. So I started calling people in government to know if they would help. Since then, we haven’t heard from him. My children are also asking about their father.”
Mrs Madubuko, who was at the time of speaking to newsmen flanked by leaders and members of the Nigerian Community in Australia, made a passionate appeal to the federal and Anambra state governments to join forces and ensure the release of her husband.
The President of the Nigeria Association in Kambra Australia, Mr Uche Okorie, who also spoke described the continuous disappearance of Madubuko as a “national embarrassment,” noting that it was disappointing that he could go missing in the last weeks without a trace with the level of security the state prides itself with.
He said, “When we hear stories like this that somebody who was with us here and left to serve his fatherland is missing so unceremoniously, and no consequences whatsoever, on that level we think it is something that is unacceptable and that is why, we are lending our voice to that of Mrs Madubuko to say this is not only a human rights issue, it is also one of national embarrassment and we ask the government to remedy the situation.”
The leader of Igbo Community, Australia, Dr Uche Menakaya, in his contribution said their immediate concern was to secure the release of Madubuko hence he appealed to relevant agencies of government to swing into action.
Menakaya explained that they were satisfied with the contributions of Madubuko while serving the administration of Obiano in Anambra state.
The Anambra Police Public Relations Officer Mr. Haruna Mohammed had in reaction to the development said that the Command was investigating the sudden disappearance of the former Commissioner.
According to him, “The case was reported on 16/1/2021 at the Central Police Station, Awka and the Commissioner of Police has directed the anti – kidnapping unit to investigate the circumstances surrounding the incident.”