The relatives of an Oyo State-based widow and property owner, Kachi Owanwe, have cried out for help over intimidation by tenant Vitalis Njoku who allegedly used the police to harass them at their house located at Bilyman Usman Street in Jab, Abuja.
Njoku occupies one of the three flats in the building which was rented to him by Osias and Oseji Estate Surveyors and Valuers. He had refused to sign and returned the tenancy agreement form to the house agents.
With a long-overdue rent and a debt of N4 million, the owners appealed to Njoku to move out for the house to be renovated, but he allegedly refused to do so, further barring other potential tenants from taking over from him.
Instead, they said, he installed cameras and door locks at every point in the building to track uninvited guests and wade them off with dogs.
One of the widow’s relatives, Jonathan Chinedu, said Njoku had gone on to occupy the two bedrooms downstairs without their consent in the previous year, a scenario which had prompted the tenant to keep police officers at the gate and prevent their property managers from gaining access to the compound.
Earlier in November, Chinedu said he went for a routine check at the building but discovered that Njoku and his two male cousins had burgled the other apartments and carted away seven air conditioners.
Chinedu alleged that Njoku had told his cousins to take whatever they wanted as he was bound to leave soon, adding that with threats to have the case of theft reported, one of the boys’ mothers appealed and promised to replace the air conditioners with her own money.
He said the case had been reported to the Life Camp Police Station.
The relatives, however, said they wished to go to court to bring to book the policemen who had been intimidating them at the house and to evict Njoku from the building.
“Njoku is a police contractor who has been using the police to intimidate us,” Chinedu said. “They even stayed in this building for more than a year until the federal government stated that all policemen assigned to private properties should be withdrawn and that was how they left.
“The policemen had been here since September 2019 till after #EndSARS. But yet at night, Njoku still brings the police. He claims to be connected, and nobody can take him out.
“He had gone to Zone 7 when he heard the matter was going to be taken to court, not because he wanted them to investigate and do justice, but because he wanted to flatten it. And we’ve tried our possible best to get the name of the senior police officer who used to be the Area Commander of that place. He is the police friend that Njoku used to intimidate us.”