Chiamaka Mberede, a Lagos-based shoe vendor, has accused Farouq Omeiza Suleiman, a Kogi State-based politician, of refusing to pay her in full after she delivered two pairs of shoes to him in April.

Mberede told FIJ that Suleiman, who claims to be a honourable in Kogi State, first reached out to her on WhatsApp on April 29, saying he would like to buy two pairs of shoes.

The vendor said she told Suleiman that both shoes would cost him N72,000 and another N3,000 as delivery fee.

Farouq Omeiza Suleiman

“I also told him that he could pay on delivery, as it is my custom,” Mberede said.

“On Saturday, the driver got to Kogi State and notified the honourable that he had arrived. So, I called the honourable and told him that the driver was around, but he said his personal assistant would come and receive the shoes on his behalf.

“I immediately asked Suleiman who would pay since he would not be there, but he assured me that he would transfer my full price to me after his assistant had received it.

“He told me to hand over the delivery to his assistant so he could transfer all the money to me. In addition, he asked me to also pay the driver the N3,000 delivery fee from my own purse. I did because I trusted him. I was expecting N75,000 but he did not transfer any money to me.”

Mberede said the driver handed the shoes over to the assistant after she credited him. But hours after that, she said, Suleiman neither transferred her money nor picked her calls.

“After some hours, I called to ask if he had seen the shoes, and he replied in affirmation. So I asked him why he had not sent me my money and he said he would immediately. Hours after that, I called him but he refused to take his calls,” she said.

“I started looking for a way to reach out to him because I did not understand what was going on. I told him on WhatsApp that I had not received my money, but he did not reply. He later sent N45,000 very late on Saturday.”

Suleiman’s first message to Mberede.

Mberede said Suleiman promised to pay the remaining N30,000 on Sunday. His excuse, according to her, was that he had passed his transfer limit for the day.

“But on Sunday, I called until evening, yet he did not take his calls. I called so many times that he blocked my number. I reached out on Facebook and saw his profile. So, I saved his pictures and sent them to him on WhatsApp,” she stated.

Mberebe’s chat with the Honourable from Kogi state.

“He saw it and called me an angry bird. On Monday, I told him I would go to the press if he failed to pay me, but he also blocked me on WhatsApp. He blocked me everywhere.”

The shoe vendor said when her brother called Suleiman, he said he was not scared of the media. According to her, Suleiman said everything the media published would die in two days.

“He said if we were close to Lokoja, he would have sent his boys to deal with us,” Mberede said.

FIJ made several calls to Suleiman, for comments on Mberede’s allegation, but he did not answer them. He had also not replied to an SMS sent to him at press time.

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