Save my younger son’s sight, father of two- year-old killed by NDLEA begs Tinubu, gov

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Father of two-year-old Ivan Omhonria, killed by National Drug Law Enforcement Agency’s stray bullet, Mr Fidelis Omhonria, has cried out over the deteriorating rate of the second son’s eye affected by the incident.

Recall that Ivan, a two-year-old boy, was killed in July 2023, by stray bullet of the NDLEA and had been buried, while his sibling, Eromonsele Omhonria, a one-year-old boy at that time got bullet injury in his eye.

 

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Afam Osigwe

Chukwuemeka Mbamala

Chukwuemeka Mbamala

Father of Ivan and Eromonsele, Mr Omhonria, told South-South PUNCH on Wednesday in Asaba, the Delta State capital that Eromonsele’s eye is currently deteriorating as a result of delay in securing US visa for his treatment.

 

Lamenting the deteriorating rate of his son’s eye, Omhonria called on President Bola Tinubu and governor of Delta State, Sheriff Oborevweri, to as a matter of urgency expedite action to save his son’s sight.

He said, “Today makes it eight months and 13 days the incident happened. I have buried my two-year-old son and the other boy, now a year and eight months old, is going through very tough time without attention as promised, as a result of glass from the bullet which affected his eye.

 

“The state government earlier said that it would take care of the medical bills and asked me to list what I have spent, which did.

 

“When NDLEA Chairman visited us on November 2, 2023, he promised to take responsibility for the medical bills and to fly the child to US for treatment.

“He said there was no need for court case and that they would fly the injured child out for treatment; so, we buried Ivan on December 13, 2023, because the NDLEA assured us that it would expedite visa for my second son, Eromonsele’s treatment in the US and we withdrew the case.

 

“I applied for the visa, with the state government writing to the US embassy that they will take up the responsibility.

 

“The state gave us a copy of the letter, but till date, we have not heard anything from the state government. I was referred to the Commissioner for Health and I met him, he promised to get back to me, but till date nothing was done.

“When NDLEA chairman visited us, he attached a protocol officer to us for the process of taking the child to US for treatment.

 

“We submitted all documents to the NDLEA protocol officer to process, since then, they have been telling us one story after the other.

 

“The NDLEA later asked us to move visa application from Abuja to Lagos US embassy, which we did, but yet nothing happened.

 

“Because of the delay, one of my family members helped us in January 2024, to get a visa appointment for February 2, 2024, only for NDLEA to call us on February 1, around 8:30pm that our visa appointment was February 2 at Abuja. We let them know that our family member has gotten the date for us, but they said we should go, that they will send letter across to the embassy.”

Omhonria explained that on February 2, they went for visa interview, but were unfortunately denied.

 

He added, “We went for the interview and the US consulate asked who is funding the trip and we told them that it is NDLEA; they told us that there was no Federal Government, Delta State government or NDLEA in their system and so, they denied us the visa and told us to reapply.

 

“After, I left the embassy, I told the NDLEA chairman and he asked us to re-apply as we were told and that the expenditure for the trip, from Asaba to Abuja during the interview would be paid, which they did.

“Now, I have reapplied again, spent much because of the dollar rate, the embassy has given us April 2, 2024. My son’s health is deteriorating, as a result of the delay for the treatment

 

“At night, tears and blood will be rushing out of his eye. I am begging President Tinubu, Governor Oborevweri and the NDLEA to come to our aid. The situation is unbearable for us now.”

 

But the NDLEA Chairman, Buba Marwa and Delta State government, through the Secretary Io the State Government, Dr Kingsley Emu, informed that they were working on the visa process and fast-tracking travel arrangements to sponsor Eromonsele to the United States for his eye treatment.

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