•How family of 7 perished after a meal of Suya, Fruit juice
By Steve Oko
Residents of Umuagu in Umuahia the capital city of Abia State, are still in shock about the mysterious death of seven persons after a suya and fruit juice meal.
The victims, Mr. Sunday Ugba, some of his family members plus his guests met their untimely death after a suya and fruit juice meal in the night.
The man and other victims including four children that came on a holiday in his house, died after taking suya and fruit juice which he bought after a trip to Aba.
The Item-born electrician was said to have visited his building site at Aba where he spent a night, and upon return brought home the suya and fruit juice for the enjoyment of the family.
After the meal, they were said to have sat back in the palour to watch television, but by morning seven of them including all four children of another family friend on holiday in the house had died.
The man’s wife was rushed, unconscious, to the Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, where she was treated, and is now recuperating.
Apart from the wife, another survivor in the family, the man’s first daughter, Miss Ijeoma, said she also ate the suya and took the juice but not hurt.
“ I ate everything but nothing happened to me”, she said.
Ijeoma, who said that she did not suffer any ill health, told Saturday Vanguard that her father and other victims were in the palour watching television when she left them and went to the room.
She said she woke in the morning to see her mother almost unconscious while her father and others who were in the parlour were stone dead. “ I went to bed about 10:00 p.m , and in the morning I woke up to see the lifeless bodies of my dad and brothers and the four children on holiday in our house,” Ijeoma lamented
Following the strange development, she then raised an alarm that drew neighbours and sympathizers to the scene.
Ijeoma who sounded nervous while speaking with our Correspondent said she was still at a loss over the actual cause of the mysterious death.
On the theory that generator fume could probably be the cause of the death, Ijeoma said their generator had been in the same location since the past six years they had lived in the family house”, adding that “only God knows what happened”.
She refuted media reports that her father was a pastor in Assemblies of God church, saying that the deceased was neither a pastor nor a deacon, contrary to media reports (not Vanguard).
Mr. Jasper Ejimofor, an Umuahia-based lawyer and Secretary of the church where the deceased was a member also confirmed that he was neither a pastor nor a deacon contrary to media reports.
A source close to the family told Saturday Vanguard that the actual cause of the death was still a matter of concern.
The source did not rule out the possibility of generator fume as the generator of the family kept under the staircase was said to have gone out around 3:00am when it probably ran out of fuel.
According to the source the man was found dead in the parlour in a sitting position suggesting that he might have been watching television together with the children.
The daughter who survived was said to have slept in a different room, and might not have been affected by the fume.
Meanwhile, the Abia State Police Command says it has commenced investigations to unravel the cause of the tragedy.
Police Public Relations Officer PPRO, Abia State, SP Geoffrey Ogbonna, who disclosed this in an interview, however said that no arrest had been made regarding the “ sad incident”.
Meanwhile, the Abia State Government has appealed for calm while the outcome of the police investigation is being awaited.
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu had ordered for thorough investigation of the incident.
Commissioner for Information, Chief Okiyi Kalu, advised relatives of the deceased to remain calm as security agencies investigate the incident.