Geoffrey Anyanwu, Enugu
Enugu State Police Command has launched a full-scale investigation to unravel the circumstances surrounding the death of three children inside a parked Camry car at Ugwu Ogede in Itchi, Igbo-Eze South Local Government Area of the state.
The three children/victims of different parents, five-year-old Chukwuebuka Ene (boy), four-year-old Chinyere Eze (female) and four-year-old Chibugo Eze (female), were among five children declared missing on Sunday after they had gone to fetch water at a commercial borehole owned and located at the home of a former police officer but did not return home.
The other two, three-year-old Kingsley Eze (male) and 12-year-old Mmasichukwu Eze (female), were lucky as they were rescued alive and taken to hospital where they were resuscitated.
Parents of the children two of who came from a neighbouring community, Nkalagu-Okpuku in the same local government, had raised alarm when their children, who were said to have gone to the said borehole at about 8am on Sunday to fetch water, did not return home.
Amidst the confusion and panic, they raised search parties, who ransacked every corner of the community but could not find the missing children.
However, the children were said to have been discovered, according to the traditional ruler, Igwe Ike Oke, who said: “We were almost frustrated in our search when a community member, who went to fetch water heard the voice of a little child calling her name. She traced the voice to a car that had been parked for over six months in the compound where she discovered the children and raised the alarm.
“We found three of the children already dead by the time we opened the car. I think they suffocated to death because the car doors were stiff when we tried to open them at first but we engaged an artisan who forced the car open.”
Police public relations officer in the state, Mr. Daniel Ndukwe, who confirmed the incident yesterday, said the police moved into action immediately the alarm was raised and rescued the two who were alive.