Soludo’s aide apologises to GUO over brutality on Driver, company threatens legal action
Mr Osita Onuko, Managing Director of Awka Capital Territory Development Authority (ACTDA), has apologised to the management of GUO Transport Company and its driver who was brutalised by security personnel on his instruction.
Onuko who made the public apology in a Statement on Saturday said he took full responsibility for the action of the security men on Friday even when he had left the Unizik Junction scene of the brutality.
The GUO Transport Company driver who came in from Lagos was brutalised by a combined team of Police, NSCDC and Anambra Vigilance Group operatives following a traffic incident with ACTDA boss on the Ukpo axis of Enugu- Onitsha expressway.
Onuko said he was traveling towards Awka with two NSCDC personnel in his vehicle when the driver tried to overtake dangerously and swiftly veered into his lane thereby endangering his life and those of others.
He said efforts to stop the GUO driver who continued his journey without any sense of apology was futile as he refused to pullover even at Police checkpoints.
“Given that the expressway is a two-way drive, he could not meet up with his moves to overtake me and other vehicles in the line, because two heavy-duty trucks were approaching; he suddenly veered into my lane, it would have been a serious disaster.
“He eventually stopped at UNIZIK junction and the two NSCDC who were in their uniforms approached and asked him to alight but he locked up himself and his passengers in the bus.
“At this point, the atmosphere was very heated, I had to call the police and Community-based vigilante within the environment.
“I told them to take him to the Police station for a proper check and drove off from the scene. A few minutes later while in my office, the driver called me to apologise,” he said.
He said he later called the DPO to free him as the driver had shown demonstrable remorse but did not know that he was seriously brutalised in the course of arrest.
According to him, “I learnt later that the young man resisted arrest which led to a lot of violent conduct in his arrest
“I take full responsibility for all that, and I also apologise to the young man, his company, GUO, and my friends and well-wishers who have been embarrassed by my association with such an act,” he said.
Meanwhile, the management of GUO, in a statement, described the incident as a criminal assault and threatened to pursue justice for its driver through the courts.
The company called on Gov. Chukwuma Soludo to condemn the conduct of the official and set up a panel of inquiry into this incident as to curtail the excesses of his officials and forestall reocurrence.
The company apologises to its passengers whom it said were not only traumatised by the horror but were left stranded on the highway.
“We watched with great dismay, multiple videos from different eyewitnesses of how our driver was brutally beaten by Onuko’s aides.
“We thank the good, spirited individuals who witnessed and tried to intervene in this sad, inhumane act by this political officer and his aides.
“Thankfully, the driver is currently receiving medical attention, and we pray for his complete recovery physically and mentally.
“We assure all concerned citizens that we will seek legal redress, to ensure that such acts of inhumane treatment of citizens do not keep occurring,” it said.
DSP Toochulwu Ikenga, Police Public Relations Officer in Anambra, confirmed the incident but noted that there was no formal complaint from any of the parties before the Police.
Ikenga, however, said he had contacted the victim whom, he said, was in the hospital and responding to treatment.
“I am aware of the incident but there’s no complaint before us. I have spoken with the victim who is in the hospital, I can assure you that he is responding to treatment,” he said. (NAN)