Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja
Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) yesterday stated that there was no death in the convoy that went on an inspection visit to the Second Niger Bridge on Tuesday.
In statement by his Special Adviser, Communications, Mr Hakeem Bello, the minister, however stressed that the attendees discovered much later that a vehicle belonging to the police had been involved in an accident.
But he noted that two policemen injured in the process had been treated and released by the hospital, pointing that the statement was necessary after he was inundated with calls as to the safety of the federal government’s team.
“No fatal crash occurred during Tuesday’s inspection of the Second Niger Bridge by a federal government team led by the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari,” the statement affirmed.
Other members of the delegation included Fashola, his Labour and Productivity counterpart, Dr. Chris Ngige and the Managing Director of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Mr Uche Orji.
While decrying “ the sensational report making the rounds on the social media” the minister said that on arrival at the Asaba airport in Delta state, the team had visited the interchange along Owerri-Onitsha road and the east approach to the bridge in Onitsha from where they walked across to the west approach.
He added that after a media briefing by members of the team, the chief of staff was conducted to the west approach at Asaba and the toll plaza of the bridge before returning to Abuja.
“It was discovered much later that one of the vehicles in the team of the commissioner of police from Anambra state had a mishap during which two policemen sustained injuries.
“ It was confirmed from the Nigeria Police, Anambra state command that they were treated at the Federal Medical Centre Asaba and had since been discharged.
“The minister, following anxious calls from well-meaning members of the public about the safety of the members of the federal government delegation, expresses deep sympathies over the injured two men of the Anambra police command.
“However, no lives were lost at all, as claimed in the false report by the online platform of a national daily,” it stated.
Earlier, there were reports that four policemen attached to the convoy of the minister had died in the accident in Asaba.
It stated that one of the drivers lost control of his vehicle conveying security operatives and crashed into a deep ditch, stressing that the police vehicle was speeding to meet up with the ministers’ vehicles when it veered off the road and crashed.