Mortuary Fire in Enugu-Ukwu: Protesters block hospital gate, call for DNA test of burnt corpses

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Mortuary fire victims’ families at Enugwu-Ukwu General hospital mortuary in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra state, Tuesday, blocked the main gate of the hospital. They said they were fed up with daily lies fro government representatives.

Doctors, health officials and patients were trapped in the hospital as the angry protesters refused vehicles entrance and exit.

They said they have waited so long for government to give their loved ones a befitting mass burial but instead, they abandoned their remains at the backyard of Amaku General Hospital for vultures to feast on them while the cause of the fire was yet to be ascertained.

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Burnt bodies at Enugu Ukwu Hospital

Odogwublog recalls that the mortuary section of the General hospital Enugwu Ukwu in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra state was on January 29, 2019, gutted by mysterious fire with over 200 corpses burnt beyond recognition.

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The angry relatives expressed shock that almost two months of the inferno, that Anambra state government is yet to set up a panel to investigate the cause of the incident or reach an understanding with the relatives of the unidentified burnt bodies.

One of the relatives, Mr. Christian Okoye whose mother, Late Mrs Amoge Okoye was among the corpses burnt, said they locked the entrance gate of the hospital to draw government attention on the where about of  his mother’s corpse  and others.

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“We have over 200 corpses burnt in that morgue but till date, government did not deem it necessary to set up a panel of enquiry. We have a Deputy Governor who is from this place, a senator representing this constituency and House of Representative member, yet they all want this matter to die a natural death.

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Families of burnt Mortuary victims

“We want to know who is responsible for the act, otherwise, we hold government responsible. We demand a DNA test to identify our corpse or a mass burial organized to give the dead the last respect as we do in Igbo land.

Other relatives, Rita Umeadi and Anthony Nwafia said their greatest surprise was abandoning their loved ones at the Amaku General Hospital waste dump.

According to Umeadi; They abandoned the burnt corpses at the backyard of the Amaku hospital. You can go there now and see for yourself. We have been waiting for government to call us for dialogue or compensate the families involved but they did not do anything. They are busy with campaigns forgetting that there are families that are confronted with double tragedy.

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“They lied through the state commissioner for Information that the sum of N1million was given to us. That was a pure lie from the pit of hell. Nobody gave us anything and no government official has called us for any dialogue. We were just abandoned” she said.

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Mortuary victims families at the General Hospital Enugu-Ukwu gate

When contacted, the Anambra State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Akabuike said he is not disposed to comment on the matter.