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Mass burial for 51 accident victims in Benin

13 April 2013, 16:52

Benin - The University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) on Saturday performed a mass burial for the remains of 51 accident victims who were burnt beyond recognition.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the victims were involved in multiple accidents which claimed more than 60 lives at Ogbogui village on the Benin-Lagos expressway on April 5.

The remains were interred at the First Cemetery in Benin, after being transported from the UBTH mortuary.

Aikonogie Wilfred, UBTH’s Chief Mortician who spoke to newsmen at the cemetery, said the 51 bodies were given mass burial because the bodies could not be identified.

He said those who tried to identify them were relatives of the accident victims when they visited the hospital earlier.

Wilfred disclosed that two corpses had been identified and taken away by the accident victims’ relatives.

He said the identification and burial only involved bodies of dead accident victims brought to the hospital.

At the cemetery, concerned family members, relatives and friends wailed as the bodies sealed in a bag were deposited into the grave from a truck.

Odiamah Chika, who said he lost a mother, niece and a nephew, expressed regret that Nigeria had lost more lives to road accidents than it did during the 1967-1970 Nigerian Civil War.

He lamented the absence of comprehensive data among agencies in the transport sector to ascertain the authenticity of the figures of those who die in road mishaps.

Samuel Nwafor, a native of Anambra, said he lost a 47-year-old uncle in the accident.

Nwafor, who said his late uncle was a self-employed chartered accountant, said the deceased was survived by a wife and four children.

Meanwhile, the FRSC Zonal Commander, Wole Olaniyan, said some measures were being worked out to ensure strict adherence to traffic laws and safety on the roads.

Olaniyan, however, attributed road mishaps to over-speeding, and warned passengers to stop encouraging their drivers to travel at a fast spee.


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