By Tony Edike
ENUGUâ€”THREE persons including a pregnant woman, her one year old son and housemaid were found dead in their two-room apartment in Enugu yesterday, following a fire outbreak that gutted one of the rooms.
The mysterious incident occurred at Neni Street in Ogui New Layout, Enugu, where the woman identified as Mrs. Amuche Onyia, a petty trader from Agbudu in Udi Local Government Area of Enugu State, resided with her only son and the housemaid, said to be about nine years.
One of her neighbours in the compound told Vanguard that the woman whose husband travelled to Calabar some days back, had gone to bed at about 1 am after concluding the dayâ€™s domestic work with her housemaid. Unlike her usual habit of waking up as early as 6 am, the neighbour said members of the family were not seen outside when the tenants woke up yesterday morning, a situation that made them to draw closer to the building, which was erected behind one of the houses in the compound.
â€œOn a closer look, we saw the entrance door and the two wooden windows locked but there were marks of tick smoke on both the door and windows while their slippers were lying at the doorstep,â€ the neighbor narrated.
According to him, sensing that something dangerous must have taken place, the tenants rushed to Ogui police station and reported their strange discovery to the police, from where some policemen were detailed to ascertain what happed.
On arrival, they discovered that the only door to the house, which could be described as a Boys Quarter, was still locked from inside, while the policemen and the tenants had to force the door open, only to discover the lifeless bodies of the woman and her son lying behind the door of the front room, which served as their sitting room.
In the second room, the housemaid who had also given up the ghost was seen lying on the mattress placed on the floor of the room.
The policemen, however, observed that the sitting room was gutted by fire which might have resulted from a candle light placed near an upholstery chair closed to the entrance door. The rubber carpet in the room, the upholstery and electronic sets were completely burnt while the occupants were sleeping.
They were suspected to have died after inhaling the smoke that emitted from the burnt household property.Â The roof of the building was, however,Â intact.