From Chuks Collins, Awka
April 15, 2012
Four persons, including a ninety-five year old man and his three grand children in Akaeze village of Urum community in Awka North Local Government Area of Anambra State have died mysteriously in their sleep after allegedly inhaling fumes from an electric generating set.
According to witnesses, the septuagenarian, Chief Sopulu Nwankwo, and his grandsons, Dubem Nwajiobi,13 years old, Chigozie Nwajideobi and Favour Nwankwo, both of whom were 7 years old were discovered yesterday morning dead with foams in their mouth.
Villagers including old men and women, young girls and boys who quickly gathered at the family’s expansive compound shortly after the news broke to console and condole with family members of the victims variously described them as peaceful, cheerful and friendly.
Pa Sopulu Nwankwo’s son in-law, Mr. Charles Nwajideobi whose sons-Dubem and Chigozie were among the dead explained that the boys oftentimes slept in their grand father’s house to watch films and football matches.
He said he had come in the morning to take back his sons, as his house was close by, only to discover that the doors were still firmly locked and that nobody came out despite his desperate banging, loud calls and knocks on the gates.
He said it was when he used the inlaw’s spare key in his possession to open the door that he found the four corpses and his daughter, Ogochukwu Nwajideobi who was still alive but struggling to and gasping for breathe.
She was then rushed to a private hospital in Awka immediately for medical attention.
Though many attributed their death to smoke from the generating set, with which they watched films and slept the previous night, others, including Mr. Nwajideobi suspected they were poisoned, as there were whitish foams oozing from their mouths.
At the hospital where little Miss Ogochukwu Nwajideobi was placed on a life support machine, the physician incharge of her case, Dr. E.I Onwubuya said they were doing their best to resuscitate her. He however declined to comment on how critical the girl’s condition was as a result of inhalation of fumes.
Sympathizers at the hospital who spoke to journalists were praying for miss Ogochukwu’s recovery so she can tell what really happened.
The doctor however said that inhalation of carbon monoxide especially large quantity from a generating set could lead to death and make one foam from the mouth, if there was convulsion in the process.
The Police Public Relations Officer for Anambra State Command, Mr. Emeka Chukwuemeka could not be reached to confirm the incident. But people are praying for miss Ogochukwu Nwajideobi’s revival so she can tell what really happened.