Igbophobia From the Archives:Outrage as Buhari’s aide names five Nigerians accused of robbery in Dubai

Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, has come under heavy criticism for releasing the names of five Nigerians arrested for alleged robbery in Dubai, UAE, with the intention of “stereotyping an ethnic group.”


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Dabir-Erewa on Wednesday released the names of the Nigerians who were accused of robbing a Bureau De Change to the tune of Dh 2.3 million Dinars in Sharjah Area of Dubai.

The presidential aide, in a statement by her special assistant, Abdur-Rahman Balogun, gave the names of the suspects as “Chimuanya Emmanuel Ozoh, Benjamin Nwachukwu Ajah, Kingsley Ikenna Ngoka, Tochukwu Leonard Alisi, Chile Micah Ndunagu.”

Dabiri-Erewa described the alleged action of the suspects as “despicable and shameful.”

She lamented that the suspects went to a foreign land to disgrace the country.

“We need to tell our brothers behaving badly to behave. Let’s get the names of those involved to name and shame them. One bad apple cannot be allowed to spoil the whole bunch,” she noted.

The presidential aide, however, came under the hammer of some Nigerians who hold the view that she released the suspects’ names with the intention to stereotype the Igbo nation as criminals.

However, there are others who defended her action of “naming and shaming” as necessary deterrent to criminality.

Here are some of the reactions of Nigerians to the release of the alleged robbers identities:

@Mr_JAGs: “The five Nigerians arrested for alleged robbery of Dh 2.3 million Dinars in Sharjah Area of Dubai, UAE:

@conscience_open: “Yoruba woman executed in Saudi Arabia…Abike Dabiri no name.
3 Kwara pilgrims in Mecca custody for drugs. No names.

“20 Nigerians on death row in Mecca.

“Nigerian kills British soldier.

“Two Nigerian brothers in Smollett case.

“5 robbers in UAE… Abike these other ones are Igbos?”

@FrustratedNige1: “Why not publicize over 20 Nigerians facing drug charges in Saudi or the Nigerian woman that was executed recently? They aren’t Igbos?

“How about all the Yorubas that were arrested for wire fraud in UK, US?

“Did US, UK get hard on visa applicants? Did you call them destiny destroyers?

“Abike, the government plus individuals like Mr_Jagz, yourself & others on social media harbor anti-igbo sentiments, period.”

@Ugochukwuuwaeke: “Abike Dabiri – Erewa is an ethnic irridentist. She cannot hide her disdain for the Igbo. Why single out the Igbo boys for naming but failed to name their Saudi Arabia counterparts?”

@CountryPeopleNg: “Buhari supporters rejoice as five criminals of Igbo origin get docked for robbing Bureau De Change In U.A.E. A Buhari supporter who chose to be anonymous told us that this incident is retribution for South-East’s refusal to vote for Muhammadu Buhari.

@midasnonso: “Of “Igbo Origin?” We are doomed in this country. We now classify bad eggs by their tribes. Tomorrow one person wants Biafra and you guys will shout them down. I blame Abike Dabiri.

@online_medic: “5 igbos get caught for robbery in UAE and Abike Dabiri (FG) is having a field day doing what they do best.

“Igbos haven’t been president or vice in over 45years. Who do we blame for the decay in the Nigeria system?”

@AchallaPaul: “Again, why didn’t Abike Dabiri-Erewa publish the names of eight drug traffickers recently executed by Saudi Arabia? Isn’t this unpatriotical and unethical?”

@gsopitan: “I tried to run some ideas by aunty @abikedabiri a little while ago but got no traction. There are excellent Nigerians living away from Nigeria looking to contribute to solving problems in tangible ways but there is no defined path for them to do so.”

@phemmynice: “This is ridiculous action. Now it’s up to our President and Abike Dabiri and Foreign Minister to engage on this… will such action be taken if the Americans or British citizens engaged in such ridiculous act? Let those 5 animals face the justice not punishing all Nigerians!”
@Arinzeedeh: “I hate crime and wouldn’t ever support a criminal even if he is my twin brother .But let all be treated equally no matter their tribe and creed. It is well.”

@Olushola_Shola: “Not asking the government to support these guys but to absolve the entire Nigeria from the mess they bring on us all. Dubai cannot collectively punish all Nigerians or categorise all of us as criminals.”

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