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How poo-poo saved me from being killed Enugu fatal crash – Mechanic


Mr Augustine Iloka, a native of Awgu, in the Awgu Local Government Area of Enugu state, tells RAPHAEL EDE how he came within a whisker of dying on the day an articulated vehicle rammed into mechanic workshop and killed his apprentice, Sunday Eze

How did you escape when an articulated vehicle rammed into your shop, killing your apprentice?

Since my workshop is along the road, we witness a lot of accidents. The accident occurred around 4.30pm on Wednesday, October 28, 2020. After I finished repairing someone’s motorbike, I went inside the bush to defecate. As I was coming out of the bush, a truck whose brake had failed was coming towards me in the bush and I don’t know how I escaped. Then I began to hear children crying. So, I rushed there and saw that the trailer had rammed into a school bus. I joined others to rescue the children. In the process, I noticed that my apprentice was also affected because the trailer rammed in my shop while he was in the shop. His death is very painful. If I had not answered the call of nature, I would have died.

 Did you have a premonition that the day could go bad?

 I had some strange feelings on that day. I was very weak and there were no jobs to do, so I was just sleeping. We were joking until around 4:00pm, then I told my apprentice to get some food that we would eat. Shortly after he brought the food, I felt I needed to defecate so I left. I am still speechless. I am very confused. Since that day, I have been down. My apprentice was a good person and was hard-working. He did whatever I asked him to do. He was the first apprentice I had that did everything I asked him to do with joy.

 Have government officials come to console you and others affected by the accident?

Yes, people have been coming. When the Deputy Governor came with the former deputy president of the Senate, they promised to put a bump and a barrier here. They also said we should leave this place but if we leave, where do we go? We were not the cause of the accident; the road which was badly designed has always been responsible for many accidents here. The road was not supposed to be diverted here but it was done because of bad governance.

 How do you feel?

 I feel bad because I lost the most valuable thing, my apprentice. But I have started going to my workshop because hunger will kill my family if I don’t work.

 How often do you remember him?

 I remember him every moment. I can picture him every time I’m in the shop. I would like to beg the government to assist families of the victims of this disaster because it is a great loss to the state and the nation at large, but our government doesn’t care about the people. They know what to do to avert further accidents; that accident was not the first one that happened here.

Bibiyobra: Sunday, 8 November 2020 at 11/08/2020 02:08:00 pm


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