Tragedy has struck in Obinze community of Owerri West local government area of Imo State as a family of 12 were found unconscious in their residence.
The incident was said to have left the community in a state of mourning as the victims were rushed to the Imo Specialist Hospital, Umuguma, Owerri.
According to eyewitness account, on arrival at the hospital, five out of the twelve victims were confirmed dead while doctors and nurses battled to save the lives of the seven others.
The family head, who incidentally, was one of the victims, is the chief driver of the senatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Owerri Zone, Hon Uche Onyeagucha.
When our correspondent visited the hospital, a large number of people were seen, especially relatives and doctors and nurses working tirelessly to save the lives of the victims who were on life-support facility.
A close relative of the victims who spoke to our correspondent stressed that the cause of the incident remained a mystery to the family and the entire community.
He queried why the family of 12 could be found unconscious in a room in a duplex that has six rooms.
His words, “The head of the family is the chief driver of Uche Onyeagucha, the PDP senatorial candidate for Owerri zone and his name is Kingsley. He was supposed to drive his boss to the Sam Mbakwe Airport this morning but he didn’t pick up his calls. The boss also called his wife but no response.
“Uche Onyeagucha then sent his personal assistant to his house. On arrival, nobody opened the gate after all the knocks on the gate. Somebody now scaled the fence and gained access into the compound.
“Doors were forced open only to discover that the 12 of them were locked in a room. They were all unconscious. An alarm was raised and people gathered.
“They were rushed to this hospital where five including the head of the family were confirmed dead. Others are on life support machines. We pray that they make it so that they will tell the story of what really happened.
“The 12 of them included the chief driver and his family, siblings and children of his wife who came on a visit. The most painful is the death of the two-year-old child. What did that innocent child do? We suspect foul play.”
When contacted, the state police public relations officer, Michael Abattam, said the incident had not been reported to the command.