The Director General of Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency and former House of Reps Member, Hon. Joan Onyemaechi Mrakpor has said she would be seeking redress against a journalist and her nephew, Mr. Sunday Odiaka for defamation of character.
The politician popularly called Ada Anioma, made this revelation while giving her own side of the online trending story that she slapped a grand mother to coma.
Briefing the journalists, Mrakpor narrated how she related with the journalist who resides in Lagos prior to her election into the House of Reps in 2015, and she offered to appoint him as a Media aide afterwards.
“I invited him to Abuja to facilitate his appointment under me. But on realising he was working already in Lagos, and based on the high cost of living in Abuja, I told him to instead remain in Lagos, still do his job and work for me from there.
“As a journalist like he claimed, he can work from anywhere. So I told him he would still get the appointment letter as my Media Assistant and that he needed to open an account for that purpose.
“That was all as I never get to hear from him again. To my chagrin, he started maligning my person and tarnishing my family name on the social media. When a street was named after my father, he called my father unprintable names, saying he was not qualified to be identified with a street name. My father was a Councillor and later became a Vice Chairman.
“Again, when I was appointed the DG of Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency, he wrote that the former DG had been sacrificed in order to put me in power after being removed as member of the House of Reps. What he didn’t realise was that the law establishing the Agency made provision for just a term. Later on, he wrote that the Agency was under funded under the former DG, while it was adequately funded under me and I given free hand to operate. Later when we started the clean-up exercise in Asaba, he said Asaba people should resist me because I was only making people poorer in the name of clean-up.
“He was doing all of these from Lagos and not as a resident in Delta. But each time I was reporting to his parents to caution him.
“For crying out loud, we are family. I am nee Ugba; and Ugba and Odiaka are brothers. I wanted to go to police because the attack was becoming too much. But I realised I came from Ubulu-Uku, a very strong traditionally rich kingdom. So I decided to leverage on the counsel of the Diokpa of the family (Umudasi) and of course elders of Abuedo Quarters and then the Obi-in-Council.
“At a time he even alleged I threatened to eliminate him and his siblings. So I had to demand for a platform for Sunday Odiaka to come and explain how I intended to eliminate him. But he didn’t show up when he was summoned. The Obi-in-Council even threatened to ostracise him if he failed to show up to explain
“On seeing how he was going on with the attack on my person, maligning and tarnishing my image, I had to petition the police. At this point everybody started calling me, apologizing on his behalf.
“Sunday’s father is a nice man, he bears the same name with me, Amaechi Odiaka, but we call him Chamber. But sorry to say, Sunday’s mother is a direct opposite. However, I refused all pleas until his father almost knelt down to beg my elder brother. My brother came to plead that I should jettison the matter. When I was eventually touched was when Uncle Chamber came to meet me in the rain at a wedding function to beg, that I decided to forgive Sunday. I reminisced on the name he called me ‘Amaechi’, and that was how I decided to withdraw all the charges I had pressed against his son.
“Sunday himself had to send me a text message on the 21st July, 2020, confirming that his father told him he had been forgiven and the charges withdrawn. He said ‘For the first time in months, I and my family are experiencing relief. Thank you for forgiving me Auntie”, Mrakpor explained.
Going further, she said that “After all these, Sunday come back to start accusing me of imposing my brother for the Local Government Chairmanship election. I noticed he was supporting the current Vice Chairman of Aniocha South Council, Hon. Joe Ikenwe for the Chairmanship, but I was not bothered. It’s his right to do so as a Nigerian.
“It also happened that my younger brother, Jude Chukwunweike Ugba was equally in the race for Chairmanship. He is a Nigerian, a graduate, a pastor, a Level 12 civil servant before joining politics, current SSA to the Governor without any criminal records. His only offence was being a blood relation to me. PDP as a party put processes in place through which a candidate would emerge, either through Electoral College or Direct Primaries. Jude Ugba emerged through an overwhelming vote by the Electoral College to defeat other aspirants. Our leader, Chief Agbabu and the LGA PDP Chairman signed the final result which they submitted to the party.
“This was what Sunday Odiaka saw that he started calling for a protest against me for impunity and imposition which he posted on his timeline. He eventually staged the protest to Government House in Asaba during our last Exco Meeting for the year on December 22. As if that was not enough, on realising I was coming into Ubulu-Uku for the Christmas celebration on the 23rd, he mobilized Ubulu-Uku youths against me in my home town. I had two options that day, either to go to the police or go and report to his father first.
“I never slapped Sunday’s mother. I only went to inquire of his father, but I met the mother who said he was not at home. And I said your son, Sunday has started again. The next thing she said was “If anything happens to Sunday, it will be on your head. She started raining curses, saying have you come to slap me, come and slap me. The moment I noticed she was reacting negatively, I left and went to the DPO of Ubulu-Uku Police Division to report that my life was under threat by Sunday Odiaka.
“I was surprised to later read online that she was beaten to coma by me. Later they said it was Jude my brother who slapped her and that I dragged her from the room. Then there was a picture of somebody lying in a clean hospital bed. The same woman who came out when I returned with the police, asking for her gown to follow the police. And then the same son, Sunday whom her mother claimed was in Lagos, reported that he was hiding in one of their rooms where he recorded the voice of the mother, shouting Jude you slapped me and screaming for help. Now where is the video of the slap taking place?”, Mrakpor asked.
The DG had also claimed that the threat to invade her by the youths was subsequently carried out as they destroyed the billboard worth over N12.5 million that she and Pastor Uzor Nzekwu did and placed at the Issele-Uku junction to Ubulu-Uku.
Meanwhile, there seems to be contradictions from the beating allegations. Sunday Odiaka had revealed to us over the phone that his grouse against Hon. Joan Onyemaechi Mrakpor dates back to 2015 after working for her during her election to the National Assembly, which he said she never fulfilled her own part of the promise of giving him appointment.
He acknowledged that Mrakpor asked him to open an account and send to her, but he never did because he was skeptical that politicians don’t fulfill promises.
He also acknowledged to have apologized to Mrakpor at a time and was forgiven, but insisting he was coerced to do so by an uncle.
“I worked for Mrakpor and she didn’t settle me. Even though I never bargained for anything with her, but a labourer deserves his reward.
“Now I am being victimized for working for Hon. Joe Ikenwe:to become the next Aniocha South Local Government Chairman. I am hiding now, because I learnt the police is looking for me. I need my freedom”, Sunday Odiaka insisted.
Moreover, Hon. Onyemaechi Mrakpor confirmed that the family had been appealing once again for her to forgive.
Insisting however, she said she must press legal charges to restore her fundamental human rights and to serve as deterrent to anybody or journalist who derives joy in tarnishing the image of public office holders for political gains.
Her words, “I know that anything that has to do with a politician like me is always blown out of proportion by people. I never wanted to say anything on this matter, but for the respect I have for the NUJ and her leaders, I have to do this.
“I have respected my family and people enough. The young man had called me different names, Jezebel, Sole Administrator, Political Goddess, insulted and disparaged me just to score a cheap political point. This is the time to seek legal redress”, she posited.