The relatives of late James Ocholi is suspecting foul play in the death of the Minister of State for Labour. Ocholi, his wife, Blessing; son, Joshua and driver died along the Kaduna-Abuja Expressway on Sunday, March 6, in a ghastly car accident.
When the minister of Labour, Dr Chris Ngige paid a condolence visit to the family on Monday, the relatives of the deceased- Ocholi’s uncle, Abdallah Aliu; another relative, Paul Audu; and the immediate younger sister to the late Blessing Ocholi asked that the driver of the car be investigated, The Punch reports.
According to Ocholi’s family members, the fact that driver of the car which somersaulted several times, was still able to take photographs of the deceased and upload on social media, smells of foul play because ordinarily, he ought to be unconscious. Aliu said: “Distinguished Senator Ngige, I know you very well. When James Ocholi was told to work with you, I knew he was in good hands because the last time I saw you was in Anambra state. We ate with you in your house as a governor. This man that just died is not a lone person. We leave this responsibility in your care.
Whoever recruited the driver and posted (redeploy) him should be investigated. It can happen to anybody, it can happen to any minister. It can happen because it has happened. “So, we want to know who recruited the driver, and at what speed (he was during the trip) to the extent that the corpse of the deceased cannot even be recognised. Can you imagine that? I am worried, it is worrisome.”
The family also said the driver and the orderly ought to have cordoned off the place and evacuated the corpses as this had been the tradition whenever a VIP was involved in an accident. Shedding more light on the allegation, Aliu said: “The side of the door, where the Honourable Minister sat, was not properly locked because after the car somersaulted, the thing flung him and so he had a terrible and fatal damage that his body was beyond recognition. There was a foul play in Ocholi’s death.”
According to him, the minister’s death was political and quite suspicious as some people want to score some political points against the system. “While I was in his house, I already knew because those who conspired and plotted it (the death) became jittery because I have never been to that house and they don’t know me. But somehow, they became jittery, scared and worried,” he said. Aliu noted that God had made him know what happened and those responsible will be caught.
He said: “The perpetrators want to derail the focus of this administration. They are looking for every way to put a wedge in the wheel of success. I can specifically pinpoint those who plotted these things. What they are trying to do now is to knock heads together and the earlier we get rid of them out of that place, the better. As we were there, they were trying to get the contacts of the ministers that came there for condolence, making phone calls and reporting back to whoever is their manipulator.”
Aliu added that the late minister was not smart enough to know that these things could happen. Responding to the allegation, Ngige said the government would investigate how the driver was employed. Meanwhile, Boboye Oyeyemi, the Corps Marshal, Federal Road Safety Corps said the agency does not recruit drivers for governors, ministers or other senior government officials.