Wives of slain Police officers who died during an armed robbery attack at a branch of Zenith Bank in Wetheral Road, Owerri, Imo State, have received the donations from GoFundMe campaign launched by The PUNCH Newspapers and other social media activists.
Mrs. Rose Iboko, widow of the heroic police officer, Chukwudi Iboko, received a cheque of N4,690,144.64; while Mrs. Blessing Agbo, widow of the second victim, Sergeant Sunday Agbo, got investment and cash totalling N2,258,217.79.
Mrs. Iboko, who was accompanied by her son, Favour, received a cheque from the representatives of two non-governmental organisations, appointed by PUNCH Nigeria Limited to oversee the disbursement of the funds at the Imo State Police Command in Owerri.
The two NGOs are Development Support Initiative, represented by its Executive Director, Mrs. Jacqueline Odiadi; and the Rock of Ages Empowerment Foundation, represented by its Project Manager, Mr. Hyginus Eze.
Eze explained that Mrs. Iboko got N4,690,144.64 out of the N6,948,362.43 of the fund, while Mrs Agbo got N2,258,217.79.
The total donation, $19,354.77 was exchanged at the rate of N359 to $1.
In her address, Odiadi explained that the Iboko family got a bigger share because the money was basically donated to take care of the family of the slain cop.
The Second family was only discovered during investigation carried out by the NGOs, Odiadi revealed.
“It was a tough and good experience for us as NGOs because we have not done this kind of thing before. It was done on pro bono basis because there was no profit made by any of the NGOs,” she added, while narrating her experience managing the fund.
Mrs. Iboko, in her response, thanked all Nigerians, especially PUNCH Newspapers, for the concerted efforts to help her at such a trying moment.
She said the kindness had changed her life and those of her children for good.
On what she would use the money for, the 32-year-old mother of seven surviving children said she would use part of the money to complete the family’s building project, while the remaining amount of money would be used to establish a business.
Earlier in his speech, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Tunji Abimbola, who represented the Imo State Commissioner of Police, Chris Ezike, commended PUNCH Nigeria Limited and the donors for being compassionate towards the Iboko family.
The police boss said, “That was very thoughtful. PUNCH has always been outstanding, especially when it comes to crime reporting.
“Police is an endangered species in Nigeria. The statutory amount for this kind of thing is very meagre. This is the first time I am seeing this kind of gesture towards the Police.”