Learner drives SUV into church, crushes 3 children to death

Posted by Matthew Uche, Umuahia | 22 June 2017 | 14,055 times

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•Abia Police Commissioner Leye Oyebade.

The Abia State Police Command says it has launched investigations into the killing of three children last Sunday at the Hall of Harvest Parish of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) located at No 103 Omuma Road, Aba.

News Express gathered that a female learner driving a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) crushed the children inside the premises of the church. Three other children who were fortunate to escape death are receiving treatment in the Emergency Ward of an unnamed hospital in the commercial city.

Following the ghastly accident, the church authorities are said to be looking for alternative accommodation as the present location is rumoured to be a haunted building where mysterious deaths have occurred.

Pastor Joseph Ugboaja of the Hall of Harvest Parish, Abia Province 2, told newsmen that he was on an exchange programme in another parish of the church that black Sunday when he received news of the accident.

The pastor said he did not know exactly what happened but dismissed the claim that five children died in the accident as false.

Ugboaja said: “When I rushed to the scene, I learnt that a woman learning to drive had an SUV while going to church that Sunday.

“On trying to negotiate the bend where the church is, she lost control and with the speed she was driving, plunged into the premises where children were sitting and crushed three of them to death.

“Three other children sustained injuries and are now in the hospital. One had her arm broken and two were in critical conditions on Monday but they are now responding to treatment, although they are in pains.”

The pastor said that the church has been in touch with the families of the victims, stressing that they have been doing the best they could to handle the situation.

“There is no amount of words that can comfort them completely but our prayer is that God will comfort them and we pray that such a tragedy will not happen again in our parish,” he said.

According to Ugboaja, two of the dead children were buried on Sunday and Monday while one was still in police custody in the mortuary because the father of the child was not at home.

On the issue of the building being haunted, with occupants dying yearly by fire outbreak and other mysterious means, the pastor said the building’s status is left to God. He added that the church was planning to move because of the size of her congregation before the accident. He disclosed that the church has been using the building since 2002 without any such incident.

“With the present development, the church authorities will assess the situation and know how to ensure the church moved out of the building,” he said.

Mr Chima Monday, who witnessed the accident, said it happened around 9am, adding that the ash-coloured vehicle had brake failure and killed the three children on the spot.

He blamed the accident on bad roads and pleaded with the Abia State Government to help rehabilitate Omuma Road to reduce such fatal accidents.

When contacted, the Abia State Police Public Relations Officer, Geoffery Ogbonna, said the accident occurred last Sunday during church service.

He further said he was told that only one child died in the accident, adding that the woman has been taken into custody while investigations were in progress.

Source: News Express

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