Augusta Osaigbovo, the UK-based lady alleged to have paid her cousin, Okonoboh Osaro (44) N500,000 to assassinate her elder sister, Gladys Osaigbovo, has denied the allegation.
Instead, Augusta has called for a public probe into the investigation with a view to ascertaining the true position of the matter. According to Augusta, the allegation is a gang up by some members of her family back in Nigeria because she stopped sending money to them.
You recall that two weeks ago, Osaro, was paraded alongside Lucky Oboh, at the Lagos State Police Command headquarters, Ikeja, for allegedly attempting to assassinate 60-year-old Gladys, over an alleged case of human trafficking that went awry between Augusta and one of her nieces back in the UK.
Osaro, a commercial bus driver in Lagos , told journalists that his aunt Augusta (UK-based Nigerian) gave him a mobilisation fee of N500,000 for the assassination of her elder sister, Gladys, with a promise to pay the balance of N4 million.
The bubble however burst Mrs Gladys’ sumptuous meal changed her assassin’s mind and he shared the entire murder plan with the police.
After Divisional Police Officer, Igando, CSP Taiwo Kasumu, got a whiff of the alleged plans to kill Gladys, he planted two agents provocateur he identified as Igbinedion Ogbevon and Success Ehiosun to play along with the hired assassins.
In a petition to the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, Augusta said:
“ I want to say here categorically that I’m the said Augusta Osaigbovo and that Madam Gladys is my elder sister, the first born of my parents.
The prime suspect, Osaro Okonobom, is my cousin. There has never been any time I contracted or asked Osaro Okonoboh to harm Gladys. There was no time I discussed N4.5million with Osaro.
I just read the whole thing in the media just like every other person.
The claim by the police that I gave the suspects N500,000 upfront for the dirty job must be proven. How did I do that?
Because from the report, the suspects went to Edo to identify their target and then returned to Lagos to ask for the balance and I had already given them N500,000. “How did I do that?
Did I hand the money to them by hand or did I send it through someone? The last time I spoke with Osaro was mid-July. The only person I discussed the matter with was my brother here.
Osaros’s wife told me some people picked him up on the street of Benin and took him to a remote place and called her to demand for N3 million or else they would hand him over to the police to parade him.
But she told me I should not tell anyone because I asked her why didn’t she call Osaro’s brothers and sisters living in Germany? At that point, I didn’t even understand what was going on and why they were demanding for money, it was thereafter I heard that Osaro was arrested in Lagos.
“My determination to stop sending money is the reason they ganged up against me; the same reason they plotted the human trafficking allegation six years ago. It was a collective effort to tarnish my image in the UK.
They gave me terms on how to support them and if I don’t do their bidding, I’m a bad person; because I’m not doing my brother’s bidding, he’s not supporting me.
How can some family members be so wicked? I don’t know where I’ve gone wrong. I’ve been long away from Nigeria and I’ve lost that sense of integration within the Nigerian community that things like this just affect me the more.
At present, I’m a trained social worker. I’m not a human trafficker. I’m an income earner, I work and earn salaries. N4.5 million in my estimation is about 11,000 pounds or thereabout. That is one third of my annual income, which Osaro claimed I’m willing to give away to kill somebody I have no interest in.
I stopped communicating with Gladys in the past six years. I have no evil intention against her. Seeing how she is, I feel sorry for her. For her to say she was going to be assassinated, whether it’s true or not, is frightening.”
Vanguard reports that Augusta called on the IGP to hold a public inquiry into how the Police reached a conclusion on the allegation of attempted assassination against her, with credible evidence.
Describing the investigation as one-sided, Augusta insisted she was innocent of the allegation. But the Commissioner of Police, during the parade, said he would contact the International Police, with a view to inviting Augusta down to Lagos to state her own side of the story.