ABA—The lifeless body of a 19-year-old teenager, identified as Obinna Igboke, has been found floating in a lagoon located opposite Umuocham Girls Secondary School, Aba, Abia State, barely three days after he allegedly drowned in the river.
Vanguard gathered that Igboke, who hails from Ikwo in Ebonyi State, engaged in a N2, 000 bet with his friends on who could swim across the lagoon in the area, but the bet turned fatal as he got drowned while his friends fled.
The deceased who also worked as a dry cleaner along Umuocham road, Aba, was alleged to be addicted to alcohol and boasted that he could swim across the lagoon without harm.
When Vanguard visited the area the body of the deceased was still floating in the lagoon. The situation caused panic in the area, forcing shop owners and residents to desert the road leading to the lagoon for fear of police arrest.
Some of the deceased’s relations who spoke to Vanguard at World Bank Police Station, said that they were not aware Igboke entered into a bet with anyone which led to his death.
According to them, “We heard he got drowned in the lagoon on Saturday and on Monday morning, we got information that his body was seen floating on top of the water. We all went to the traditional ruler of the community, where the incident happened to ask for their permission to take his remains home for burial. On getting the approval, we were trying to bring him out of the lagoon when policemen from World Bank came and took everyone to their station.
“We didn’t know about the betting that he was said to have entered into by whomever that he did that with.”
Igboke’s relations appealed to the Police to release his elder brother who was arrested while trying to recover the corpse from the lagoon.
“Police told us they want to conduct autopsy which we may not have the resources to foot the bill. What we are saying is that they should release his corpse to us and grant his elder brother bail because he was not there when the incident happened. He came from Lagos on hearing the incident. The money that we would have been used for all those tests will be enough to transport him home and bury him.”