Nigerian student goes missing after boat ride with nine Ukrainians in Odesa

The whereabouts of a Nigerian in Ukraine, Caleb Obari, have sparked international outrage with his countrymen taking to social media to protest his disappearance.

20-year-old Obari, a recent Nigerian graduate of a Ukrainian university, disappeared while attending a yacht party at the invitation of a woman in the southern city of Odesa on August 20.

According to reports, there were ten passengers on the boat but the Nigerian was the only foreigner.

Six days later, neither rescuers of the State Emergency Service nor the police had found the Ukraine’s Sumy State Agrarian University’s graduate.

Obari’s disappearance caused an international outcry with Nigerian users on social media started sharing posts with #JusticeforCaleb and #BlackLivesMatter hashtags.

“The unfortunate disappearance of this young (man) won’t be taken lightly,” wrote Ekemini-Abasi Okon, head of Nigerian Student Union Ukraine on his Facebook.

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“I urge all relevant authorities to look into why he disappeared,who made him disappear and within the shortest possible time!”

The National Police in Odesa Oblast opened criminal proceedings under premeditated murder article and reported that experts will make “all necessary examination if the body is found, including the cause of death.”

The boat set sail from the Sauvignon yacht club in Odesa at a distance of four kilometers from the coast, but returned back without Nigerian.

According to Odesa volunteer group of rescuers called 911 platform, Obari’s friend waited for him after the party was over, but the only thing he got was only personal belongings and a phone without any explanations of what happened at sea.

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Obari’s parents are in limbo too. They ask for help to find their missing son.

“We are not comfortable at all. We don’t sleep,” said Caleb’s father Mark on ФТ Instagram video, posted by ‘Foreigners in the Ukraine’ community. He called Nigerian student community in Ukraine to act as one since “it could happen to anyone.”

According to Alexandr Sopelnik, head of 911 rescue platform, Obari was invited to the party by Vera Topalova, owner of Odesa BDSM-themed bar Iznanka, and he was the only foreigner among the other nine Ukrainian passengers.

While the police reported about opened criminal proceedings, Sopelnik from the 911 platform accused National Police of unwillingness to search for the missing man.

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He said that the police did not make any public indications about a missing man on the day when it happened, but only on Aug. 25.

“The police are trying to whitewash themselves in order to hide the fact of the crime,” said Sopelnik.

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