Imo Govt Sets Up Coroner’s Inquest Into Death Of Student Frogmarched By Soldiers
The Imo State Government said it had started inquest to decide the death of Queendaline Ekezie, a 15-year-old pupil of Army Day Secondary School, Obinze, Owerri, who collapsed and died during a rigorous punishment by Two soldiers in the school.
The state Commissioner for Education, Gertrud Oduka, on Thursday said government officials were in touch with the deceased’s family, adding that due diligence would be done in the case.
She said, “We don’t want to issue a statement in a hurry. We have launched an investigation to ascertain the actual cause of the death of the pupil. Some senior officers of the ministry are in the girl’s village. The matter is a sensitive one and we are being careful.”
According to report that Queendaline, a Junior Secondary School 3 pupil, and her colleague, Delight Aguocha, had got to school late on Thursday, February 15, 2018.
They were said to have met two soldiers on the school premises, who insisted that they frogmarched as punishment for the lateness.
The soldiers reportedly asked them to repeat the punishment three times, as the victim collapsed and was rushed to an army hospital where she died.
Our correspondent reported that the victim’s father, Hyginus, passed out on hearing the news.
He was reportedly taken to a hospital in the community for treatment.
Hyginus, who had returned to his house in Umuoso, in the Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State on Thursday, said there had been pressures on his family to let go of the case.
The victim’s father, who spoke in Igbo, told one of our correspondents during a visit to the house that his relatives asked him to forgive the soldiers who allegedly killed his daughter.
While noting that he wanted a peaceful resolution of the matter, he said no date had been fixed for Queendaline’s burial.
Meanwhile, some Nigerians, who read the report on online and other social media platforms, expressed anger at the incident, saying the soldiers should be brought to book.