Tragedy struck in Benin, the Edo State capital, as seven members of a family were reportedly feared dead after eating food suspected to be laid with Poison. The incident took place at house 40, Otete Street, off Textile Mill Road, Ogida quarters, in Egor Local Government Area of the state.
A visit to the victims’ house showed that the area had been deserted while a few sympathisers were seen outside the compound. One of the residents of the area, who lives opposite the deceased house, Mrs. Christy Igbinadolor, told newsmen that she was in her house on the fateful morning when a man came to ask her about the whereabouts of her neighbours. Igbinadolor narrated how she had advised the man to go to the house and knock at their door and if there is no response, he should go to the police station and report. According to her, “This morning, when I woke up, I sat outside and I saw one man who came to ask me whether these people (the victims) are around and I replied that I am just waking up from sleep.
“So, from there, the man went to the compound and knocked at their door. And I asked what happened; he said it is their senior brother in Port Harcourt. “He said their senior brother called him and that he should come down and find out what was going on.
“I told him that when there is no response, the only thing he should do is to go to the police station and report. “So, the man went to the police station and came back with some policemen and some members of the man’s church. “They broke the door and found out that some of them have died. And they carried them to the hospital.” Another sympathiser, Mrs. Rachel Anyanwu, said the man, who lost his children to food poisoning, had lost his wife five days before the latest incident.
Anyanwu said they tried so hard to revive one of the children but couldn’t before they were rushed to the hospital. “The man lost his wife last week Sunday. Those who were rushed to the hospital this morning were his children and other relatives who came to sympathize with the man over the death of his wife. “I know the man as an evangelist while his late wife was a pastor,” she said. Mr. Felix Ejofor, a sympathiser, who rushed the victims to Central Hospital Benin, said the cry at the compound drew his attention to the scene.