Sola Ojo, Kaduna
The Health4All Media Initiative (HAMI) on Wednesday described the death of one of its members, Dominic Eze Uzu, 60, as “shocking” and “saddened”!
His death, according to a statement by the Secretary of the group, Sola Ojo, came at a time the HAMI was trying to intensify maternal and newborn reportage in Nigeria with a focus on rural communities in Kaduna State.
HAMI is a group of journalists cut across print, electronic and new media working on health as one of the key component of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Nigeria is working towards.
Igwe, as fondly called by colleagues and affiliates, according to the Unit Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Zaria Command, Mr Abubakar Murabus-Tata, was killed in the auto crash alongside three others while taking his daughter, Dame Dominic, who just secured admission into Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, the same school he graduated from some decades ago.
“Dominic Uzu would be greatly missed in terms of offering professional guidance in any capacity he could and his firm stand on any course he believed to be just,” Murabus-Tata said.
FRSC accounts revealed that the crash that killed Dominic and others took place at about 12.30 pm on Tuesday, February 4 at Dumbin Rauga, about six kilometres away from Zaria, involving a long DAF truck and a Toyota Hiace commercial bus with registration numbers FKY 321 YF and XB 632 NSR, respectively.
The statement read in part:
“Dominic Uzu was a former staff of New Nigerian Newspapers (NNN), former Secretary of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Kaduna Council.
“He served in different progressive committees and associations included HAMI, Arewa Online Publishers Association, League of Professional Online Journalists in Africa (LEPOJ), Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) among others.”
The group has called on the Federal Government to speed up the ongoing rehabilitation on Abuja-Kano highway to reduce the spate of deadly crashes on that road.
“While we commiserate with the loved ones Dominic and other departed souls in that crash left behind, we call on President Muhammadu Buhari, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola and Kaduna State Governor, Nasir, to synergize to expedite action on the ongoing rehabilitation of Kaduna-Zaria axis of Abuja-Kano highway to reduce the number of lives and property lost on that corridor virtually on a daily basis.
“It is important to remind the federal government that, the road we are talking about is the major road that connects the majority of states in the North to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, hence, the need to fix it as quickly as possible to salvage the situation.
“The 427 kilometres road, with thousands of vehicular movements on it daily, had in recent times, when it was opened for the rehabilitation work, claimed many productive lives cut across all walks of life including medical doctors and academia”, he added.
Dominic, who would have clocked 60 a few months away, though an indigene of Enugu State, had spent about 45 years in Kaduna State where he schooled, worked and raised a family. He is survived by a wife and four children (three girls and a boy).