17-year-old scavenger, guardian electrocuted in Abeokuta

The boy was scavenging when one of the metal objects he was carrying touched a live wire.

A 17-year-old boy and his guardian, a policeman, have been electrocuted in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.

The incident was the fallout of the on-going road projects in the town.

The young boy had lost his father to gunshot wounds by armed robbers few months ago and was under the care of his late father’s colleague. On Sunday evening, however, both lost their lives.

The boy, identified as Moses, was scavenging the rubbles in front of government house opposite the police barrack in Ibara when he got electrocuted.

Witnesses said he had already completed the scavenging and was about heading home, when one of the metal objects he was carrying touched a live wire at the demolished road construction site.

The boy was promptly electrocuted. His guardian heard and immediately rushed to the scene to stage a rescue. As he attempted to rescue his ward, he also got electrocuted.

The bodies of the victims have been deposited in the mortuary.

One of the witnesses told PREMIUM TIMES that the electrical line was supposed to have been cut off but was left on because a top officer of Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, was having a party in Abeokuta.

The witness, who works with the Bureau of Electrical Engineering Services in Abeokuta said that the line also prevented the bureau from carrying out its duties.

The Secretary to Ogun State Government, Taiwo Adeoluwa, arrived at the scene of the accident for inspection.

Mr. Adeoluwa later led few other government officials to the house of the deceased at the police barracks and promised government’s assistance to the family.

The Senior Special Assistant to Ogun State Governor on Security Matters, Patrick Akinduro, also visited the family to condole with them.

Mr. Akinduro, who is a senior police officer, assured of government’s readiness to help the family with burial arrangements.

Reacting to the incident, the Public Affairs Manager of PHCN in Ijeun and Olumo Districts of Abeokuta, Richard Oyewole, told journalists that an investigation will be opened on the matter.

He denied negligence by the PHCN officials over the incident adding that the company doesn’t grant outage on frivolities.

“I have contacted some of our field officers, and like you are aware, yesterday was Sunday and normally if the Construction Companies are to work on any area, they will request for outage but as we speak,

yesterday being Sunday, there was no outage permit granted by our company.

“We are still making investigations and we are going to make announcement later on the issue” he emphasised.

“We don’t grant outages on frivolities, normally, our line supposed to be on 24 hours unless there is a fault or an accident and what we can do is to isolate that area to prevent life being lost because any

outage will put a lot of people into darkness,” he said.

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