From Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The remains of deceased Vanguard correspondent Tordue Salem were laid to rest Saturday at the Gaado community of Mbayion in Gboko Local Government Area of Benue State.
Salem, a reporter with Vanguard Newspapers, covering the lower chamber of the National Assembly, went missing on October 13 in Abuja at about 8 pm on his way from work.
His sudden disappearance had sparked concerns from Nigerians and corporate organizations including the Mzough-U-Tiv, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Nigerian Union of Journalists, (NUJ) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).
His corpse was later found at Wuse General Hospital exactly 29 days after the police had said he was killed by a hit and run driver who is currently in police custody.
This narrative did not however go down well with the family of the deceased.
His corpse was later to be found at Wuse General Hospital exactly 29 days after with the narrative by the Police that he was killed by a hit and run driver who is currently in police custody.
However, this narrative did not go down well with the family of the deceased who subsequently rejected the corpse.
GOV ORTOM SYMPATHIZED WITH THE FAMILIES OF LATE TORDUE SALEM
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, in a funeral oration, sympathized with the family of the deceased journalist describing his demise as very unfortunate.
Governor Ortom who was represented at the Burial by the Commissioner for Health and Human Services, Dr Joseph Ngbea, described the deceased as a vibrant young man whose promising career, life ambition and aspirations were cut short by death.
“As a versatile journalist with Vanguard Newspaper attached to National Assembly, the deceased brought his professional experience, hard work and patriotic service to bear on his assignment.
“His Sterling qualities and a deep sense of character impacted deeply on the lives of his family members, colleagues and several others who came in contact with him,” the governor said.
He further prays God Almighty to grant the entire family of Salem Ungwaga and Mbayion community in the Gboko Local Government Area the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
On his part, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila lamented over the death of Salem describing the development as sad and unfortunate.
The Speaker who was represented by the member of the House of representatives for Gboko/Tarka federal constituency, Dr John Dyegh assured that the national assembly will not rest on its oars until the circumstances surrounding Salem’s death is unravelled.
He prayed that God comforts the family at this very trying moment and grant them the fortitude to bear the irreplaceable loss.
In a funeral oration, President, conference of Benue Journalists Abuja, Dr Emmanuel Anule told the gathering that the body has lost a committed member adding that the vacuum created by Salem’s demise will be difficult to fill.
Earlier in a requiem mass, a visiting priest from the Catholic Diocese of Kastina-Ala who noted that death is the way of all flesh called on Christians to be prepared to meet the Lord whenever they are called upon to do so.
His burial was witnessed by people from all walks of life including the former first lady of Benue state, Mrs Regina Akume, a governorship aspirant on the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Benue state, Jeff Kuraun, among others.
Other dignitaries at the burial were the Vice President of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Zone D, Kris Atsaka, the Caretaker Chairman of NUJ Benue State Council, Stephen Ijoh, the former Benue NUJ Acting Chairman, Kajo Martins, General Manager of Benue Printing Corporation, Ben Agande, Editor of The Voice Newspaper, Solomon Ayado, and members of National Assembly Press Corps, Abuja.