At least 38 residents of Woji and other communities in Obio/Akpo, Bonny and Gokhana Local Government Areas, Rivers State, breathe their last breath, 24-72 hours after drinking suspected toxic locally brewed gin, popularly known as Kai Kai at a dog meat joint have emerged.

Proprietor of dog meat joint, Mr. Friday Dickson, purported to have laced the delicacy with killer- seasoning, hotly denied the allegation. He spoke to Niger Delta Voice at the Woji Police Divisional Headquarters, where he is under custody. Irate youths razed his restaurant, but Dickson, who has been in the business for over a decade, recalled that a man called Chikobi and Chiefo brought the local gin to his restaurant that Sunday allegedly to celebrate his new chieftaincy title.

Curiously, the celebrant did not drink the gin he brought.  The wife of one of the victims corroborated Dickson’s story. The mysterious Chikobi, said to be a Yoruba man from Ogun state, is on the run after the episode but Dickson said he could recognize him if he sees him. There is also a puzzle on how the killer-gin got to Bonny and Gokhana local governments. Chikobi came to Woji but there is no information on who took the gin to aforementioned two local governments.

Except he left Woji for the Bonny and Gokhana after the “celebration of death” or they were other merchants of death. Investigation by Niger Delta Voicerevealed that many of the victims expired wrestling with death, vomiting and complaining of abdominal pain. Some lost their vision, cried of chest and waist pains.

Jerry fought death

Niger Delta Voice witnessed the death of a victim, Mr. Jerry, who passed away inside a tricycle that was conveying him home.  The poison apparently reacted at the point, as he started struggling with unseen forces at the back seat of the Keke NAPEP. The panic-stricken tricycle driver took to his heels.


I know nothing about the local gin- Dog meat joint operator

Owner of the dog meat restaurant, Mr. Dickson, told Niger Delta Voice: “I have been in this community doing this job and I did not kill anybody. That Sunday, I was inside my restaurant busy with other things I do not know what happened outside. “I only heard that one man that use to come to my restaurant, he is from Yoruba, brought kai kai for all the people there to drink. Me I do not know anything about it.”

Asked if he used other special condiments in preparing penultimate Sunday‘s delicacy, Dickson said, “I used all the ingredients that I have been using since my 10 years in Woji. I do not know the man who brought the drink. But I think they use to call him Chikobi and Chiefo, if I see him, I can recognise him but I do not know where he lives.”



Monday, death started.

“It was reported that a man came from Ogun state with gin (kai kai) saying that they made him a chief in his state and all of them that were in that restaurant ate dog meat and drank the gin, but that the man himself did not drink.

“They used the gin in cooking the dog meat and this sounds unbelievable. On Monday when I was at Mini-Woji, I met one of our daughters, Otunahia Chioma.  She greeted me, that same Monday night, she started vomiting and then gave up.” Chief Ogbonda added, “Same Monday, I also saw one Umoh from Akwa Ibom state whose wife is a nurse, he died after awhile. So far, we have recorded 11 deaths.

“Some of the names I have here are Mr. Friday from Akwa Ibom, Miss Otunahia from Woji, Mr. Jackson Adams (popularly known as Scatter), he is a carpenter from Akwa Ibom, Mr. Jerry from Omoku in Rivers state, Umoh from Akwa Ibom and Chief Amadi Odum’s gate man also died.”

Our worries

He asserted, “Our fear now is that we do not know how many persons ate and drank the gin. The owner of the restaurant, Mr. Friday Dickson, a member of Man O War is now at Woji Police Divisional Headquarters. We are still trying to identify the man from Ogun state who brought the drink. Nobody has seen the man, we are still investigating.”

He disclosed, “Mr. Friday Dickson has been in this business of selling dog meat in our place for some years now. Those who eat dog meat in our community patronize him. We are even lucky that most of our youths who eat dog meat did not go there that Sunday. “One of our daughters was unlucky to be one of the victims. The relatives of most of the victims have taken their corpses and probably buried them and some of them are in the hospital.

“This is the first time this community is experiencing this kind of ugly situation. We cannot say it is the dog meat, the gin or the coronation per se, but we want the government to wage into the issue and find out the real cause of the death. “The gods of our land are not angry that a stranger is crowned a king in our land because the coronation they did was just out of joke. We are a developed people and we do not believe in those fetish things,” he stated.

His words: “We cannot go to juju to find out the cause of the strange deaths because this generation has gone beyond that. Christianity has taken over; we will only investigate scientifically and come out with the truth.”

Illicit gin smuggled into community

The community leader said, “We suspect that the same gin that killed people in Ondo state was smuggled into our village. Some of the people there have confirmed that those who are dying are those that drank the gin. That gin should be the cause of this death.” He added, “And for the man who brought the drink to refuse to take the drink and disappeared till now should show that he imported the dangerous drink into our community. The man is wicked; he does not reside here because we have tried to know whom he is and where he resides.

“He is a visitor to the restaurant and decided to bewitch the community. The owner of the restaurant should tell us more about the man; although it is not every customer that he should know his house.”

Police nonchalant until death escalated

Similarly, the secretary of Woji Youth Association, Mr. Daniel Adolphus, said, “The strange deaths on the streets baffles every one of us. The story we heard is that some people drank local gin on Sunday. The people are Ben, Marshal, Jackson, Fabian, Ojiboy, Chika, Jerry who just died, Otunahia who is from Woji here and Mr. Akpan.

“We as youths, we have tried in our own capacity to see how we can assist them. We have also announced that anyone who visited the restaurant last Sunday should declare himself for help. There is one funny thing that happened, when the number of death was about three, I called the police to come and assist us, but they said since my relative is not there, I should forget about the matter. However, when the death increased to 11, the police came into the issue.

“When they came, they said they have gone to the scene of the incident that they did not see anybody, I replied them that if they had come earlier, there would have been remedy to the situation. We call on the government to send medical teams to conduct some tests so that we can know what led to this whole thing,” he asserted.

…condemns burning of dog meat joint

He said, “Some angry youths from the community have already burnt down the restaurant, it is condemnable. That is the more reason we needed the police to arrest the situation. Now there is no gin or the dog meat from the restaurant to be used as sample.”



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