“I am not bedridden”: Drama in Benin as father of Arik stowaway shows up at Government House

by ‘Jola Sotubo

Stowaway teen returns to Edo

Perhaps not wanting to be left out of his family’s new found fame, the father of stowaway boy, Daniel Ihekhina, yesterday made a surprising appearance.

Osaigbovo Ihekhina, who was previously said to be absent because he was ill and hence bedridden, appeared  yesterday at the Government House in Benin City, Edo State during a meeting between the Ihekhina family and  Governor Adams Oshiomhole.

The appearance of Mr Ihekhina, 44, led to confusion as he explained that contrary to reports that he was sick and bedridden, he was living separately from the family due to a disagreement with his wife.

According to reports, he said his wife refused to stay in the house where he could afford the rent. Therefore, he decided to move out of the house a year ago to where he could afford the rent.

He said: “I decided to come here today (yesterday) to tell the world that I am the father of Daniel. Initially, when I heard the news, I thought my son was kidnapped. But my wife said I should calm down that when everything is okay, she will call me.

“Arising from my loss of job, I decided to move to a new apartment where I can afford the rent and told my wife that they should move in with me, but she refused and continued to stay in the three-bedroom flat on 7, Ehigiagbe Street, Ekenwan, Benin City.”

Mr. Ihekhina who said he resides at Siluko Road, noted: “I usually pay my children’s school fees and provide feeding money regularly, contrary to claims that I abandoned my family.”

He accused the wife of making it look as if he was dead by denying people access to him.

Meanwhile, De RAUFS, a volunteer group which had indicated interest in the welfare of Daniel was at Government House, Benin City. Represented by Yinka Muyiwa, head of legal team, De RAUFS said it came to Edo State to reaffirm the scholarship it earlier gave the lad to continue his education up to university level.

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