• Thursday, June 20, 2024
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BusinessDay

11 Bayelsa female politicians die in auto crash

Auto crash claims 14 lives in Kogi, leaving 13 injured

A Valentine Day tragic road accident along the East-West Road, near the old market at Ahoada in Rivers State, has killed 11 top female politicians from Bayelsa State.

Reacting to the incident, Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa cut off all official engagements for three days as a mark of honour and respect for the deceased women.

Governor Dickson described the incident as a tragic, monumental and painful loss to the state, stressing that “the women that lost their lives in the accident were our mothers and sisters”.

He prayed God to grant the bereaved families the courage and strength to bear the painful and irreparable loss of their loved ones.

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It was gathered that the tyre of one of the vehicles in which they were traveling exploded resulting in the ghastly accident which has thrown Bayelsa State and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) into mourning.

The women included the wife of the secretary to the government of Bayelsa State, Elizabeth Allison-Oguru, three former commissioners, a former member of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly.

The women who were members of Women for Change Initiative were returning to Yenagoa from a private visit to the first lady, Patience Jonathan, at her hometown, Okrika, in Rivers State when the incident occurred.

A preliminary report of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) issued by Bayelsa State commandant, Jack Vincent, said a total of 29 persons were involved in the accident.

Vincent stated that 18 sustained various degrees of injuries while 11 lost their lives out of which nine were burnt beyond recognition when the vehicle in which they were traveling caught fire.

An FRSC preliminary report said three vehicles, a Toyota Hiace bus, Toyota Siena and Toyota Highlander with number plates GBB591FS, ABU640AE and YEN 371RJ, respectively, were involved in the accident.

BusinessDay gathered that the deceased also included Ruby Benjamin, a special adviser to Governor Seriake Dickson and former member of the state House of Assembly.

An ex-commissioner for women affairs, Gimbra Pamowei and Consider Amadi, a woman leader from President Goodluck Jonathan’s hometown, Otuoke, died in the road mishap.

Also deceased is a top woman politician in the state, Ayakpo Enamamu, while another ex-commissioner, Ebisinte Ayabowei, survived the tragic crash.

The women were said to have delayed their journey from Friday until Saturday to enable them see off the first lady at the Port Harcourt International Airport before returning to Yenagoa.