Sunday, 12 January 2020

365 days after broadcaster's kidnap: family, friends want answers to Petertex whereabouts

By Kingsley Agim 

 On Saturday, 11 January, 2020, made it exactly one year since ace broadcaster and journalist, Peter Okon Etim was kidnapped by unknown gunmen.

Family and friends of the adept broadcaster, popularly known as 'Petertex,' led a procession from his residence at Charmley, through the Streets of Calabar, to his workplace, Cross River Broadcasting Corporation, where he worked meritoriously until his abduction.

Speaking to newsmen, on behalf of the family, his first son, Alexander Etim, said the last one year has left the family in gruelling pain, trauma, unanswered questions, high expectations, as they continue to hope for the return of their dear father and brother.

"In the last one year, we have engaged the law enforcement and security agencies in the state in search for what happened to Peter-Tex. But it has been one year without our family head, breadwinner, husband, father, brother, friend and colleague. It's still unknown what has happened to him," Etim lamented.

"Is he still alive; if not where is his remains? Who are the people who carried out this dastardly act? Are they still walking the streets free? What can we do as family to turn the page on this matter? Should we believe that a man was taken away forcefully while in active service to his State and one year after, no trace,?" he queried bitterly. 

"We renew our call on the State Government,  the security agencies and his media colleagues to intensify efforts to resolve the case of the disappearance of Peter-Tex," his son admonished. 

Receiving the procession at the premises Cross River Broadcasting Corporation, in Calabar, the Acting General-Manager, Mr Eniang Ndem said Petex Etim's story of kidnap has remained a mystery; that people have been kidnapped and are released but the case of Perex Etim is still baffling to us.

"This is one year since he was kidnapped but nothing has been Saud about it, nobody knows the actual story. Its saddened us as his a professional colleagues, he was a front line broadcaster, he was very talented, he torch the life of many people in his songs and in everything he did but when he was kidnapped everywhere went silence.

"We asked questions what is going on, what can we do in the circumstance in CRBC. We were told that we should play down because, we have a radio and a television that we would have been shouting everyday, we were advised to play down so that his life will not been in danger.

"And the thing kept lingering, lingering and lingering, it is unfortunate, we do not know whether he is still alive or dead. Its saddened us that our society has degenerated to this level, one of our staff again, Glory Otu was kidnapped, the family rally around put head together and get her release.

"The whole thing is self-help, I do not know where to go to at this point, I want to encourage the family to keep hope alive because we do not know whether we will see him again or not but we are sadden by his absence. 

"We keep asking question, everyone knows that Petex was a very very friendly person, a jolly good fellow, he couldn't stand stress, he was not a rich man, that one would say, let us hold him so that the family can get money from his account, we feel the same way the family fills. We were helpless, the then management put our heads together and raise resources for his release but we do not know what happened again," the General Manager said.

He called on the government, security agencies to unravel this mystery about the kidnap of Peter Etim, wondering, "he cannot just disappear like that, they should come out with a clue to unravel this mystery."

Also speaking, the kidnapped broadcaster's friend, Hon. Edim Okon, said the procession was aimed at creating a re-awareness So that the government and security agencies will know that the people are still waiting for the return of Petertex.

Another friend, Mr. Chris Inyang, called on anyone with useful information about Petertex to not hesitate in reporting to relevant quarters in order to unravel the mystery surrounding Petertex's disappearance.

"Let the State stand up. There is nothing the government cannot do. If they put their commitment towards this, they will unravel what is going on. But finally, if Petertex is alive, return him to his family; if he is dead, return him to us. We want to give him a befitting burial," Inyang cried out.