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Nigeria's leading story blog: People streamed in all directions, Aquadana, Shillings, She was crying profusely, A chubby middle-aged woman, Grudge, Peter, Alex

Business District, Azonto
“Is there anybody you suspect in your father’s death Isabell?” Jariye asked. “I need you to tell me everything you know if you want me to investigate his murder. I will be going against some of the most powerful and influential men and women in this state if I take your case, so information is of the essence to me.” “I suspect everyone; the ones that fought him openly and the ones that appeared to love him openly.” “I want names; specific names Isabell.” “You see, the night my father was killed I was at Enitona Hotel with Dilingo, my father’s most trusted security operative. He would lay down his life for my father. I have been having an affair with him for quite some time now. We kept it as quiet as we could. I would disguise myself each time I went to meet him at the hotel. That evening, I was so stressed that I needed to see him. He did not want to come, but I made him come. You see…I feel guilty for my father’s death. I lured Dilingo away from my father. Please would you help me find my father’s killer or killers? And Dilingo’s too?”

“What makes you think Dilingo is dead?” “I don’t think he is dead. I know he is dead.” “How do you know?” First, Dilingo would not go for this long without contacting me. There is a phone number and an address that he gave me. He said if anything ever happened, I should call him on that number or check him at the address. He gave me a key too. I have called the number and checked the address and he is nowhere to be found. He told me that if both did not lead me to him, then I should consider him dead. You see…I lost a lover and a father on the same night.” She was crying profusely by now. Jariye went to the fridge and returned with a bottle of Aquadana. “Drink some water Isabell.” “Thank you.” “So do you think your life is in danger? You could ask for security you know. I am sure you mother can arrange that.” “I used to have security. I didn’t like it. I am fine really.” “Okay then. So, you have been to this address and Dilingo is not there and the phone number he gave you is not functional?” “Yes.” “That evening, why did you decide to see him during the week instead of the weekend when you two usually met?” “It was all down to impulse. You know, when you have been with someone for long and all you did was hide each time you met with him; at some point you want to break out of that shackling mode. I just wanted to see him.”

“You said earlier that you suspect a lot of people in your father’s death. Who exactly?” She took a deep breath before answering. “First is the corrupt Vincent Elemazu. He has thugs working for him and he has been struggling with the reality that he, the then incumbent governor was defeated by my father. Then there is Alex Uwadighibe. Of course he lost the election too, but you may not know that he and my dad were business partners some years back. They fell out with each other over money. My father told me that he was stealing from the company, so my father managed to take control of the board after which he fired Alex…he bought him out of the company eventually. He never forgave my father. He ran for the government house just to take some votes away from my father, but it did not work. What better time to come after him than after he had just been sworn in as governor?” “Is there anybody else?” “Yes, there is my uncle Peter Iningo.” “Why would he want to kill your father?” “When my grandfather split his estate between him and my father, Peter felt hard done by. He always felt that my grandfather favored my father. I know he hated my father venomously, even though he tried to mask it. He definitely had enough grudge against him to want to take his life; out of pure envy and hate.”

“Okay, I will look at him too. Where does he stay?” “He lives in Bongandi.  I will write down his address for you later.” “Is that all then?” “This might sound odd, but I have this suspicion…I have not shared this with anyone else, so you must keep it between us. If you do look into this, you must not tell anyone I said it. Just be discreet.” “You have my word on that.” “I…I…I don’t fully trust my mother. I fear that she might have been involved in my father’s death.” There was pin drop silence in Jariye’s office. He walked to the window and peered down into the streets. He did not know how to process the information he had just been given.

Business District, Azonto
Jariye was by the window. His office was on the 18th floor. He watched as people streamed in all directions. These are all very powerful people, he thought. I have to do this for Grace. I have managed to reach Isabell; I need to get to the root of this. “So why would you think that your mother could have been involved in your dad’s murder?”  “I have always suspected that he and Abugu Mabali were seeing each other behind my dad’s back. They have been very careful about it, but for as long as I can remember, I have suspected them. Well, how long since my father passed away and he has offered her a job in government?” “I thought that was a move to get her back to work. Something to help the family; to help her deal with your father’s loss.” “Don’t be fooled by what you read in the news. My father left a lot of money for us. We will never lack, so she did not need to return to work for the sake of money. As for her emotional state, I doubt that she has truly missed my dad. If she truly cared about him, she should not be in the government house now working with Abugu and seeing him every day. I think he gave her the job so they can see each other every day without sneaking around.” “If that is the case, then you are suggesting that Mr. Abugu Mabali was either involved or was privy to the plot to kill your father?” Isabell nodded.

Another moment of silence passed as Jariye pondered the scenario. There were too many powerful people with the motive to kill the late governor. “So are you going to take my case? Are you going to look into it at least?” “Yes, I will. I may not live to see the end of it, but I am willing to give it a try.” “Name your price and you will be handsomely rewarded.” “I will send you a quarterly bill as the case progresses. It won’t be easy, but I will give it my best shot.” “I hear you are one of the best, so I count on you. This stays between us. Call me on this number if you need to reach me. I will try not to be seen with you too often. Tongues wag a lot in this city, especially media people who are always snooping around for information.” “That works for me. I will keep you posted. Before you leave, can I have the key to the apartment you mentioned earlier? Where Dilingo said to look for him?” “Yes. I have it here and the address too.” “Thanks!”

Edmond Crescent, Ilungashi
Jariye parked his car a short distance from the address. Ilungashi was a small affluent suburb North-West of Azonto. He looked around to make sure he was not being followed. He could not rid himself of paranoia considering how Grace was murdered. He used the key to let himself in as if he had been coming to the house for long. It was a quaint one-storey duplex. The interior was exquisitely furnished. “Who is there?” A female voice shouted from the top floor. He was not expecting anyone there. Have I been set up? He wondered. His heart began to race frenetically. “And who is there?” Jariye replied mustering some courage. He reached out and picked up a pair of scissors he found lying on the table. “I am the cleaner,” the voice replied. He heaved a sigh of relief. He began to climb the stairs still clutching the scissors. “Who are you?” A chubby middle-aged woman in a light blue dress asked. She had a broom in hand.

“My name is Desmond Akiti,” Jariye lied. “I have never seen you before. I clean this place twice a week,” the woman answered him. “I am a friend of Dilingo’s. He gave me a spare key so I can come here whenever I am in town.” “I see,” she replied. “So when was the last time you saw him?” “I have not seen him in a long time actually. He paid me 2 years upfront so all I have to do is come in and clean the place twice a week. Normally, I would find dirty plates, beddings and all that lying around the house, but for a long time now, I have not seen anything to suggest that he has been here at all.” Jariye figured the woman did not even listen to the news. She would have known that Dilingo had been declared missing and his wife did not know of this house.

“What is that smell? Can you perceive it?” He asked her. “Yes. I have been perceiving that smell for some time now but I can’t seem to figure out where it is coming from.” “Are you finished with your work today?” “No, I still have to clean downstairs.” “You can leave now madam. I would like to get some rest. You can do the rest of the cleaning the next time you are in. Don’t worry, I will talk to Dilingo the next time I see him.” “Thank you sir,” she said respectfully. He took out a wad of notes and offered her 25 Shillings. “God bless you sir,” she thanked him effusively. “No problem madam.” She ran downstairs picked up her things and left. He locked the door and began to search the apartment. He was convinced there was some dead animal in the house. The stench was terrible. After a thorough search, he could not find anything. Then, he stood in the middle of the kitchen where the smell was heaviest and looked around. Still, he could not trace the source of the disgusting stench.
LINK TO EPISODE 6: http://www.moofyme.com/2016/06/dirty-politics-episode-6.html

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Victor Chinoo

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Moofyme.com: An African Literary Blog: DIRTY POLITICS - Episode 5
Nigeria's leading story blog: People streamed in all directions, Aquadana, Shillings, She was crying profusely, A chubby middle-aged woman, Grudge, Peter, Alex
Moofyme.com: An African Literary Blog
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