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Face mask suffocates security guard to death

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Solomon Ede was in the habit of never failing to wear his face mask in order to protect himself against the dreaded coronavirus otherwise called Covid-19. At bedtime every night, he would usually remove the loose-fitting piece of protective cloth. Penultimate weekend, however, he made a costly error that sent him into an early grave.

On Friday, August 28, the 50-year-old private guard popularly called Baba Rita and attached to a building in Alako area of Abeokuta, was said to have gone to bed without removing his face mask shortly after he took a local gin popularly called ogogoro.

His lifeless body was found face down with his face mask the next day, suggesting that he died of suffocation from the face mask.

READ ALSO: One dead, six injured in Ondo auto crash

Sources revealed that neighbours who came to fetch water at the compound of the house where the deceased worked as a guard until his death banged on the gate of the building endlessly but Ede did not come out to grant them access to the tap.

It was said that the noise at the gate of the building alerted Ede’s boss who opened the gate for the visitors and decided to check on Ede in his room, but the door to his room was firmly shut. His boss then forced the door of the apartment tucked inside the security house of the building open only to find Ede lying face down on the bed lifeless and with his face mask in place.

The boss was said to have raised the alarm which attracted other residents to the building, with many blaming the deceased’s tragic death on his obsession with alcohol.

The news of the guard’s death triggered emotions as sympathizers had a hectic time consoling his widow, who had rushed to the scene on receiving the news of her husband’s death.

It was said that the expectant wife of the deceased’s boss was shell-shocked and almost passed out at the scene but for the quick intervention of female sympathizers who took her away.

A source said: “But for the noise from those who came to fetch water in the early hours of the day, no one would have known that a tragedy had occurred.

“It was when the deceased failed to come out of his apartment to attend to those fetching water in the premises of the house that his boss came out and discovered his body.”

Shocked by the discovery, the unnamed Ede’s employer reported the matter to a police division at Kemta, Idi Aba.

Sources said the deceased was recently persuaded by his boss to open an account in a bank for the purpose of receiving his salary, following the way he was lavishing his money on alcohol.

A neighbour who spoke in confidence said: “Earlier on the day of his unfortunate death, his employer reminded him of their previous discussion about opening a bank account so he could be paying his salary into the account without delay, especially when he is out of town.

”He was to be paid his salary the same Saturday his lifeless body was found in his room.”

Some sympathizers revealed that Ede took to alcohol after suffering depression. He was said to have been warned by his employer and residents of the neighbourhood many times to desist from excessive consumption of the local gin.

“He usually removed his face mask before going to bed. But he took some ogogoro late in the evening and was downcast. Those who saw him at the entrance of his apartment asked him to remove the mask on his face and go to bed, but he refused.

READ ALSO: Widow abandoned by inlaws because she is from Ngwa

”However, he went to bed forgetting to remove his face mask and slept face down. He was probably choked to death by the face mask,” said a source who spoke in confidence.

The source added: “No one would believe that he started working as a guard in the building in March this year, because he was a likable fellow who related with everyone pleasantly. Hence, he had unhindered access to his boss’ apartment.

“He was a very easy going man, only that he could not restrain himself from indulging in the consumption of local gin which eventually led him to wear a face mask to bed, leading to his death.”

A resident identified simply as Olamilekan disclosed that the deceased had rebuffed those who pleaded with him to retire to bed when he was discovered to be drunk.

“He was sighted on Friday seated at the entrance of his apartment at the security house where he worked. He was looking downcast and was asked to go into his room but he refused. It was shocking that he died overnight.

“From the look of things and without prejudice to police investigations on the cause of his death, he was so drunk and probably forgot to remove his face mask before sleeping face down and suffocating to death.”

Policemen from Kemta Police Division in Idi Aba were said to have evacuated the body of the deceased to the mortuary at the State General Hospital at Ijaiye, Abeokuta.

The spokesman of Ogun State Police Command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), promised to revert to our correspondent when he was contacted on the phone.

He said: “I haven’t heard about the incident, but I will confirm the story from the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of Kemta Division and get back to you,” he said.

He, however, had not done so at press time.

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NIGERIA

Ijaw nation vows to resist national water resources bill

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Following its earlier condemnation by different groups and individuals, the Ijaw Nations Development Group (INDG) has condemned the reintroduction of the National Water Resources Bill in the National Assembly, vowing to resist it vehemently.

The INDG described the bill as not only provocative but also a complete distortion of Nigeria’s federalism, insisting that reintroduction of the bill was the height of insensitivity to the plight of ordinary Nigerians.

Ijaw stakeholders, who stated this yesterday during a virtual meeting attended by over 100 participants, lamented that the Federal Government sent the bill to the National Assembly without engaging the states and peoples that are the direct stakeholders but only acknowledged them as footnotes.

The Keynote Speaker at the meeting, Anthony George-Ikoli (SAN), described the bill as a deleterious agenda.

“Taking a critical look at the National Water Resources Bill 2020, currently in the legislature and our national consciousness, I am compelled to align myself with more speakers, who in recent times, have come to the conclusion that such a bill can only be the product of an undisclosed, deleterious agenda,” he said.

He explained that true federalism usually serves to recognize the rights of the constituent units to ownership and protection of the same, noting that by its vesting sections, the bill represented an egregious distortion of federalism.

“The Federal Government has not only deprived the states of the minerals and mineral oil in the land within their territories, but it is also now plotting to take the only resource left for the states to administer for the benefit of their people through the National Water Resources Bill,” he added.

He said the time was past when the Ijaw nation would sit aloof and watch, but it was time to set an agenda for its legislators at all levels.

Another speaker and Niger Delta activist, Ann Kio-Briggs, said it was disheartening that the Federal Government was tampering with the rights of Ijaw people and the Niger Delta region.

“Water represents life and belongs to my people, we live on and by the water. For the first time, the Ijaw have to wake up because they have taken our land, oil, and air through pollution and now, they want to take our water. It is our responsibility to protect our rights,” she stated.

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NIGERIA

Finally, APC concedes defeat, admits Edo poll free, fair

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The governing All Progressives Congress on Monday conceded defeat 24 hours after Governor Godwin Obaseki, of the Peoples Democratic Party, was declared the winner of the Edo Governorship Election.

Chairman of the Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee, Mai Mala Buni, in a statement titled, “Edo State Governorship Election: Victory for Democracy,” which he signed, congratulated Obaseki over his victory.

Buni said,  “Edo State Governorship election is over, the winner has been declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission in the person of the Mr. Godwin Obaseki, candidate of the People Democratic Party.

“We hereby congratulate the winner of the election, the people of Edo State and all Nigerians. The peaceful conduct of the election and its outcome represent a victory for Nigeria’s democracy

“As a party, we join our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, to affirm our ‘commitment to free and fair elections’ in order to strengthen ‘the foundation for our political and moral authority.

“ We commend INEC, our security agencies, and all political parties that contested the election for the successful conduct of the election. As a governing party, we will take every step necessary to support the Federal Government to consolidate all the gains achieved. “

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NIGERIA

Government has no business running refineries — Osinbajo

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The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, has said the problems associated with Nigeria’s refineries will persist if the Federal Government continues to own and run them.

He noted that experience has shown that refineries were better managed by the private sector hence the need for the government to restrict itself to providing the regulatory framework for such businesses to thrive.

Osinbajo said this at a virtual meeting organized for the All Progressives Congress bloggers and social media influencers at the APC National Secretariat, in Abuja, Monday.

According to him, it was time for the nation to do more to develop its gas and renewable energy resources which are cheaper and cleaner.

He said, “If the refinery is left in the hands of the government, it will continue to experience the same problem it is experiencing now. I do not think that it is the business of the government to run the refinery. It should be the business of the private sector, which is why we are trying to focus on assisting the private sector to develop modular refineries.”

Speaking further Osinbajo said, “There is a 100,000-barrel capacity refinery about to come on stream and we hope it will by the next year. It is completely private and closely located near the Port Harcourt refinery so that it can share the facilities of the Port Harcourt refinery. We are hopeful it will come on stream in the first quarter of next year.

“There are also six modular refineries that are almost ready. There is a Niger Delta Petroleum refinery in Delta state, there is another one in Imo, there is also another modular refinery in Edo State.

“We engaged the oil-producing communities to find a new vision for the Niger Delta and we tried to encourage modular refinery that will give the people in the oil-producing states a stake so that the modular refinery is not just private but the people there have some stake and equity.

“The whole idea is to support as many private refineries as possible. We are also waiting for the Dangote Refinery with 250,000 barrels capacity which is bigger than all of the government refineries put together.

“In the next two or three months, we will see the private sector playing a bigger role and things will quickly improve. We hope that this particular effort will complete the refurbishment of the refineries which will be completed soon but I am more hopeful of the private effort been the key to the future.”

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