By Job Osazuwa
A former Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, Mr. Kelvin Iyere, has been accused of assault and threat to life. Those making the allegation are his wife’s mother and siblings, who live in Irrua, where Iyere also resides in Edo State.
Iyere’s mother-in-law, Madam Omoye Usadoh, 63, alleged that the former SSA descended on her and her children on February 26, when she was preventing him from forcefully taking away his wife, Idiaghagbon Joy Iyere, who is popularly known as Idi, from her home.
Usadoh alleged that Iyere started the assault on the said day when he came to violently take away his wife, who had been with the family for days. She said that as soon as Iyere entered the compound in a commando style, he gripped Idi and asked her to enter his car.
Usadoh said she pleaded with Iyere to leave Idi since she was not feeling fine. But she said that before she knew what was happening, Iyere started dragging her (Usadoh) on the floor. She claimed that she had to hold her daughter’s hand but Iyere pushed her to the floor.
“I injured my legs and Iyere started matching my legs with his legs. As I am talking to you, my legs are still aching me. He forced Idi inside the car. Iyere carried a car jack and threatened to kill my children with it. He later came back with a gun and started searching my home, boasting that if he sees my children and I, he would kill us,” she narrated.
Usadoh said when Iyere came with a gun, she and her family members from him. This was confirmed by Idi’s siblings, Akhere and Jonathan, who claimed to have witnessed the incident on the fateful day.
The family further alleged that Iyere had boasted on several occasions that nothing would happen, even if he kills any of the family members, because he was a friend to the police in Irrua.
When the reporter contacted Iyere on the telephone on March 11, to respond to the allegations, he denied ever beating his wife. In fact, he said that the allegations were strange to him.
He said: “That is not true. I didn’t beat my wife up and I have never assaulted her. I didn’t beat my mother-in-law too or threatened my wife’s family members with a gun. At the moment, my wife is with me at home and we are living peacefully.
“The matter is already before the police. In fact, I don’t know who is responsible for this and trying to blackmail me. My wife and I have made statements at the police station so that the matter will be investigated.
“But I have traced all that is happening to one Glory Isuekebor, my wife’s step-sister, who is trying to blackmail me for reasons I don’t know. The commissioner of police is aware, and they have invited her to come and defend the allegation. Could you believe that this same Glory even wrote a petition on my wife’s behalf, even without her consent?”
He promised that he would ask his wife to speak with the reporter immediately he got home, which he did.
His wife, Idiaghagbon, while speaking with the reporter on the telephone, also denied being assaulted by her husband. She corroborated her husband’s position that there was peace in their home. She said that her husband was not a violent person.
But her elder sister, Glory Isuekebor, told the reporter that Iyere’s wife was only playing to the gallery. She said that her sister had once told everyone in the family that she was under perpetual assault in the hands of her husband. She said that the poor woman was denying the situation out of fear of being dealt with by her husband, if she dares speak anything against him to the public.
She said that there was no way the man could deny because she had all the pictures of Mrs Iyere’s battered and swollen face. She said that though she lives in Lagos, her sister told her by herself how Iyere came to deal with everybody on February 26.
It was gathered that when Usadoh and her children saw what was happening, they allegedly reported the matter to the police in Irrua on March 1. Isuekebor revealed that some police officers went with the family members to Iyere’s home on the same day with the intention of arresting him, but they were said not to have met him at home. For four days, Isuekebor said the police did not take any further action to invite Iyere.
Within this period, Iyere was said to have come to the home of Usadoh with emissaries, begging for forgiveness. One of the emissaries he allegedly came with is Pastor Uyi Unuabor of the church where Usadoh is said to be worshipping.
When he was called over the telephone, Unuabor confirmed that Iyere came to meet him to plead with the mother in-law for mercy, for fighting her and her children, explaining that he (Iyere) did not know what came over him. Unuabor added that when Iyere came to narrate the event to him, he withheld some truths from him, but he (the pastor) later discovered that Iyere actually fought his in-laws.
As all these were happening, Idi’s brother, Emmanuel, who lives in Uromi, another town in Edo State, allegedly came to Irrua to pick Idi to live with him.
However, it was learnt that in the evening of the said date, two police officers showed up in Usadoh’s home to take a statement they already took with her on Monday. She said that they demanded evidence from the battered widow. She said that her mother showed them a dagger that Iyere had allegedly used earlier to attack her home on a different date. She said that the police took away the evidence, classifying it as an exhibit.
On same day, Iyere was said to have gone to Emmanuel’s home in Uromi, to take away Idi.
On what she want for her family, Isuekebor, who is the eldest daughter of the family, said Iyere should be made to sign an undertaking not to harm her siblings, mother and Idiaghagbon. She insisted that that Idiaghagbon was being manipulated by her husband.
Isuekebor said: “I want Kelvin Iyere to sign an undertaking that if anything should happen to my mother, my siblings and I, he will be held responsible. He threatened to kill my mother and told my mother to expect the worst for her children. He threatened that he would shoot and kill my siblings- Odion, Akhere or Jonathan or any of my mother’s children. Kelvin should also pay the legal price for abusing and beating up my mother. For 14 years now, Kelvin has been abusing and threatening my mother and siblings. That is why I cannot let this one go because we have taken enough from him.
“For Idi, she could have made a U-turn because of a threat to her life by the same Kelvin. Kelvin had told her before that if she should leave him that he would kill her. Therefore, she is afraid of her life. Severally, Kelvin has put a gun to her head to call her siblings and tell them to stay away from her anytime she is being beaten and I have the recordings.”
Idi’s brother, Udawele Akhere, told the reporter that he was around when Iyere brought out the gun to threaten every member of the family. He said it was shocking to him that his sister, Idi, could turn around to deny all that happened that day.