A group operating on the platform of Nigerian Community Association, Thailand
has alleged that over seven hundred Nigerians have been illegally imprisoned
by the Thai authorities.The group made the disclosure at the weekend in
Calabar while briefing journalists on the plight being experienced by innocent
Nigerians in Thailand.
The group said many Nigerians in Thailand have abandoned their legitimate
businesses and run for their safety as a result of insecurity occasioned by the
Leader of the group, Bishop Frank Owali, who spoke on behalf of the group
said based on the ill-treatment of innocent Nigerians in that country, they have
appealed to President through the Foreign Affairs Minister, to use his position
to intervene and arrest the ugly trend.
Owali said the intervention of the president is necessary in order to protect the
lives and property of Nigerians as well as save the good image of the country
from being tarnished by a few unscrupulous and unpatriotic Nigerians in
The group accused one Mr. Jerry Obinabo, saying he connivances with high
level individuals including staff of Nigerian Embassy to mastermind the illegal
arrest and detention of unfortunate Nigerians who refused to fall prey to their
alleged advanced fee fraud activities.
Owali said the name of any person who refuses their advances to part with
money would be forwarded to the security agencies in Thailand on trumped up
charges such as drug trafficking and the person will be promptly arrested and
“Mr. Jerry sometimes presented himself as member of FBI and collaborates
with illegal Thai Policemen to extort monies from his fellow Nigerians in
Thailand. He is fond of fabricating and manufacturing evidence in conjunction
with his Thai collaborators against Nigerians and has successfully sent many
of them to various prisons. Jerry has become a thorn in the flesh of Nigerians; a
terror and fearful person that Nigerians in Bangkok dread to see or hear of,”
Owali said the facts as to why Nigerians are ususlly arrested came to the fore
as a result of leadership tussle between some members of the country’s
community in Thailand which led to street protest about two months ago.
Owali said “the crux of the matter and the primary reason for the protest of 23th
August 2011, staged by aggrieved Nigerians was when the Nigerian
Community discovered again a staggering and alarming video confession of a
Nigerian who worked for Jerry’s extortion network ran out of luck and was
accordingly arrested by the Thai’s law enforcement agents in the middle of their
frivolous acts and taken to the Embassy for questioning”, adding that not even
the Embassy of Nigerian Authority reacted to the act.
“The man confessed that he works for Jerry and feeds him with useful
information of mostly innocent, ignorant and fearful Nigerians in order to plan a
set-up against them. He went ahead to reveal names of many Nigerians in
prison who refused to cooperate with them and their network through their
cooked-up allegations such as drugs or sometimes ordinary semolina flour and
send them to prison after extorting monies ranging from $28,000.00 from them”.
According to Owali who accused the Minister/Consular for concealing the
evidence brought before them revealing the inhuman treatments of Nigerians in
Diaspora, for appropriate legal action also presented a copy of a letter sent to
the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abuja, Mr. Gbenga Ashiru dated September 24,
2011 with the title, “The tears of Nigerians in Thailand, Save our souls” calling
on the Nigerian Authorities to come to the rescue of the unsuspecting
Nigerians who have been bedeviled for many years in the land, adding that the
ugly situation has led some of them to untimely death.
“Lives of Nigerians are in total danger because of the high level of betrayal,
bitterness, injustice, maltreatment and helplessness in Thailand. The Nigerian
Embassy which should be the last hope of Nigerians has turned against us as
its officials are now using the Thai Police to intimidate, arrest and remand us in
prison custody indefinitely without trial”, Owali said
Over 700 Nigerians imprisoned illegally in Thailand, says