This is the story of a Nigerian Police Officer named Edward Eze Onoriode who found a purse with valuables and returned it safe and untouched to the owner. The purse he found is said to contain an ATM card to an account worth over N200m and a necklace worth N1.8 million. What is redeeming and special in his story isn’t that he did what is out of this world, but because he did it in Nigeria and as a Nigerian Police. Yes, in a country that is battling heavy economic crisis and a place where corruption holds sway, Edward Eze Onoriode did what many Policemen and even ordinary citizens might not do. Read the touching story as shared by him on his Facebook wall below:
“I was at Ikeja shopping mall two days ago on duty where I recovered a missing purse at the parking lot. The purse contained; some cash both local and foreign currencies, recharge cards worth about N2000, nine ATM cards, complementary cards, valuable documents, international passport, international and local drivers license, national ID card, voters card and a gold necklace.
I took the missing purse to the security office where all lost but found items are being kept for the owners to claim should in case the owners lodge a formal complaint that their items at the mall went missing for possibly claim after identification. At the security office where we went through all the items inside the purse for record purpose, one of the security men told me point-blank that if he’s the one that recovered the missing purse, he’d remove the money, gold necklace and recharge card before bringing the purse to the office for record purpose. I wasn’t disappointed with his misguided speech because that’s the normal character of most Nigerians when they recover a missing item.
Somehow, I decide to trace the owner of the purse via her complimentary card and put a call across to her. Open receiving the call, she screamed at the background jubilating that her missing purse has been recovered. She drove straight to the mall, tracing me through my mobile number I used in calling her. When we met, she didn’t mind we were in public, she gave me a warm hug and thanked me and prayed for me. I took her to the office where the purse was kept.
She checked her purse and discovered that nothing was missing. She was astonished. She asked me again if I was the one that saw the item and I said yes. She told me that she was already in the bank filling forms to block her ATM cards. She said in those ATM cards, she have over N200m in there and the necklace in the purse is valued at N1.8m.
She also said, I just removed a heavy burden from her neck because life would have been miserable for her missing her international passport, international and local drivers licence including other documents. She kept thanking me and almost kneeling down. She was awed and she told me that she least expected a Police officer to recover a missing item containing cash and still return that missing item intact without removing a dime out of it mostly in this harsh economy.
She kept staring at me like am a God. To cut the long story short, she gave me some cash which I rejected. I told her am doing my job and taking money from her for recovering her missing purse is wrong on my part. I also made her to understand that we can become friends and maybe in the future she can appreciate my nice gesture to her but I won’t take anything from her for doing my job at the moment. She became speechless and asked me which church am I attending?
I smiled and told her “am irreligious. In fact, am a freethinker” that’s the exact words I told her. She stood there for minutes without knowing the next word to say. Anyway, we are now friends and she just introduced me to her husband this morning on phone. Her husband was so excited and has invited me and my family to join them on a dinner in any of my off days. Is good to do the right thing not because of any reward that comes with it but because it’s the right thing to do. Good morning”.