There are conflicting reports over what actually caused the crash, which led to the death of former President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and Council member, Professor Festus Iyayi on Tuesday, with the Kogi State government insisting that it was the late professor’s bus that rammed into Governor Idris Wada’s convoy and not the other way round.
Late Pro. Festus Iyayi
However, some reports are indicating that the bus, which was conveying the professor and some other officials to the Bayero University, Kano, to attend the National Executive Committee meeting of the union, had the accident due to the antics of the governor’s security detail in the convoy.
According to an eyewitness at the scene of the accident, which occurred along the Lokoja-Abuja Road in the early hours of Tuesday, over speeding by the governor’s convoy played a major part.
“No matter what anybody says, the Kogi State governor’s convoy was the one that hit us. After one of the pilot cars hit us, the bus somersaulted.
That was how Iyayi died.”
But reacting, the Special Adviser, Media and Strategy to the Kogi State Governor, Mr. AJacob Edi denied that the Kogi State Governor, Capt. Idris Wada was indifferent to the plight of the ASUU officials, who had an auto-crash along the Lokoja-Abuja road.
Accoring to his version of events, the accident occurred when the vehicle conveying the ASUU official was trying to dodge a trailer and in the process rammed unto the last vehicle in Wada’s convoy.
He stated that immediately the accident happened, Wada stopped his vehicle and directed an ambulance in his convoy to attend to the victims.
Edi also said the governor later went to the Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja where the ASUU victims were hospitalised to check on their welfare.
He also said Wada had already ordered an investigation into the auto-crash.
Edi, in a statement, said that the unfortunate incident happened at Banda Village while Wada was returning from an official engagement in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
He also refuted claims that the convoy was over speeding, according to him, the convoy was on a speed of 80 kilometres per hour when a bus collided with the escort van.
“Those injured are responding to treatment. The Governor has ordered full scale investigation into the matter and paid a visit to the injured.
“Capt. Wada sympathised with the victims and their families. He wished
the deceased a peaceful repose of his soul,” Edi said.
However, a direct fallout from the sad incident is the fact that the ASUU strike is likely to continue as the meeting, which was supposed to have held Wednesday to decide whether to call it off, has been postponed.
A source confirmed to our correspondent that the meeting would no longer hold.
He said the strike will continue until the professor is buried and all issues concerning his death are solved.
He also said the union may have to include compensation of Professor Iyayi’s family into the agreement since he died in the cause of trying to end the strike.
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