Five die after family of seven ate suya in Abia

Abia State Government Thursday paid the hospital bill of a woman and her daughter who survived suya and fruit juice consumption which killed her husband and four others.

The state Commissioner of Information, John Okiyi Kalu, in Abia confirmed the payment in a release, stating, “While we commiserate with the family and friends of the bereaved, we wish to call for calm and patience to enable relevant medical authorities properly determine the cause of death of the seven persons that reportedly lost their lives.

“Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has directed authorities of the relevant medical facility where the surviving family members were treated and discharged to ensure a comprehensive autopsy for those who lost their lives.

“The government wishes to call on all citizens and residents to maintain vigilance and remain law-abiding as we have mobilised all relevant agencies of government to properly investigate the incident.

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“The Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu has fully settled the medical bills of the survivors who are now back home.”

The husband, Sunday Ogba had bought the suya which all the family members, including extended family members who came for holidays ate.

The family which hails from Item in Bende LGA of the state and lives in Umueze Umuakanu community of Umuahia North LGA were said to have started vomiting after eating the roasted meat delicacy.

While the Wife Mrs Jessy Ogba and her daughter who were in critical condition later survived after receiving treatment at Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, the husband and four others did not.

It was gathered that among the dead are four siblings of another man, who were aged of 3, 9, 10 and 12.

According to the father of the deceased children, Chibuzor Ikwunze who is from Umuagu Ohuhu in Umuahia North, his neighbour over the years had on that faithful day called and asked him to bring his children over for a visit.

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He revealed that Sunday have been a longtime family friend who usually invite his children for holiday since he moved out from their vicinity.

He said he was shocked that the whole family did not wake up on Wednesday morning except the wife of Sunday and his daughter who were critically ill, only to discover the shocking incident.

Also speaking, the brother of Chibuzor, Ken Ikwunze said his brother called him early on Wednesday morning that he had no children again. He said he was shocked because he knew his brother had four children. He said he hurriedly drove down to his brother’s house where he met him crying uncontrollably.

“He was crying and I asked what the problem was. He told me his neighbour who usually called the children over for a visit took the children to his place. They bought suya and fruit juice which the family ate that night but unfortunately, none woke up this morning.

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“The only person alive is the wife of Sunday and his daughter who are critically ill and unconscious.

Chibuzoe further lamented, “We don’t know if it was the suya or the juice that was poisoned but all the children are dead now and have been deposited at the mortuary, and also the corpse of my friend Sunday.”

He called on the police and government to unravel the sudden death of his children and friend.

He said he would want an autopsy to be conducted on the bodies of the deceased but cannot afford to finance it.

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