July 21, 2015

Boy, 3, dies in well; 4-yr-old brother stopped from rescue attempt

Boy, 3, dies in well; 4-yr-old brother stopped from rescue attempt

File photo: The Well.

By Bose Adelaja

LAGOS—Tragedy struck last Sunday at Ita-Oluwo area of Lagos State as a three-year-old boy, Samuel Emmanuel Oluwatunmise, fell into a deep well while playing with his mates.

His immediate elder brother was, however, prevented from falling into the same well.

The incident occurred at 3pm near Ayinla Avenue, off Gasline, when the infant in company of his four years old sibling and two other children went to a neighbouring house where the incident took place.

According to eye witnesses’ account, the abandoned well was dug for domestic purposes about a decade ago but was later abandoned when water was not forthcoming.

The Well.

The Well.

Ouwatunmise’s elder brother, Ayoola, told Vanguard the well in question had been in the vicinity for many years and that it was not the first time children had been playing near it.

He, however, lamented negligence on the part of the owner of the well who left it uncovered for years.

When Vanguard visited the area yesterday, the deceased had been buried while sympathisers were at the scene to condole the parents.

Vanguard also observed that the well in question was almost parallel to the earth surface and was uncovered at the time of the visit.
Mother, Kikelomo, 40, a native of Ondo State, wept profusely as she narrated her ordeal to Vanguard.

She said: “This is our eighth year in this community and I never knew such a well exists.

“My husband was at home for holidays and my baby was invited to a neighbouring house by his playmates but two hours after they left, I went in search of them only to find my four years old boy pointing into the well in an attempt to follow his younger brother who had fallen inside but I stopped him and raised the alarm which attracted sympathisers.’’

Residents of the area claimed the deceased was recovered dead around 8pm on Sunday by the joint effort of Lagos State Fire Services and local Police called ‘Onyabo’.

Owner of the building was said to be under interrogation at Ogijo Police Division at the time Vanguard visited. But Chairman, Agodo/Alara Community Development Association, Mr. Jumah Quadri, said efforts were on to forestal a recurrence.

“The landlord will be summoned and the well will be blocked,” he said.