Journalists were once again thrown into mourning on Saturday, as news filtered in from Edo State, confirming the death of two of their colleagues, Olatunji Jacob and George Okosun, both of the Independent Television.
The two were part of the casualties recorded in an accident involving the convoy of Governor Adams Oshiomhole and a tipper lorry, along the Warrake Road, Etsako West Local Government Area.
Others including Rosemary Obayuwana of Bronze FM, David Acha, a photo journalist with Observer newspapers, Samson, driver of the bus and the chief detail to Governor Oshiomhole were said to be in critical conditions in hospitals around the area.
The tipper lorry, according to reports ran into the governor’s convoy, hitting from the second car after that in which Oshiomhole rode, leading to a multiple crash.
The journalists who were said to be 12 in number rode in the government house press bus.
Others in the press bus included Mr. Eubaldus Enahoro of the Observer, Mike Aghioma, PRO government House and a DBN Television cameraman, Paul Ezenwa, all of who were said to be receiving treatment for minor injuries.
When contacted, Special Adviser to Governor Oshiomhole, Mr. Tony Iyare said he was on his way to the scene of the accident to get first hand details of what was on the ground.
How Oshiomhole escaped death in auto crash
By Osagie Otabor [The Nation]
- Governor recovering from shock
Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole narrowly escaped death in a road accident involving his convoy and a tipper lorry along Afuze-Auchi road in Edo North senatorial district of the State on Saturday.
Three persons have been confirmed dead in the accident.
Oshiomhole and his entourage were returning from an Action Congress of Nigeria ceremony in Afuze, headquarters of the Owan East Local Government of the State where over 4,000 PDP members decamped to the ACN.
He was heading for Auchi enroute Benin where the Edo South Senatorial campaign was scheduled to hold at 3pm when the accident occured.
A statement signed from the Oshiomhole Campaign Organisation, said the tipper truck emerged from the opposite direction and rammed into the flag vehicle of the Governor before crashing into several other vehicles in the convoy leaving three people dead and several others in critical condition.
“The Comrade Governor’s back-up vehicle was badly affected as well as three other vehicles conveying security officers and members of the Governor’s Press Crew; the Comrade Governor’s vehicle escaped by the whiskers.
“The Governor is also recovering fast from the shock of the incident as it could have been worse if the tipper truck driver had succeeded in his dastardly mission. At first, the driver of the tipper truck attempted to escape but was quickly apprehended by sympathizers.”
“The Governor has ordered full scale investigation to ascertain the immediate and remote cause of this unfortunate incident which had claimed the lives of three young, brilliant and very hardworking journalists at this moment of the take-off of the Governor’s re-election campaigns.”
The campaign spokesman said the governor has every reason to suspect foul play in the incident and expect the Police authority to unravel the circumstances that led to the avoidable but unfortunate incident.
He explained that the suspicion was buoyed by the fact that there have been series of threats and boastful statements from the opposition camp, expressing very crude desperation about the July 14, 2012 gubernatorial election in the State as do or die affair.
“The Oshiomhole Campaign Organization wishes to express heartfelt condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in the line of duty. May the spirit of the Almighty God continue to abide with their families and may God grant them peaceful rest in the hereafter.”
“As a mark of honour, the flag-off earlier scheduled for the day had been put off until further notice.” The spokesman concluded