Tragedy struck in Owerri , the Imo State capital, on Monday after yet – to-be identified gunmen shot dead a serving corps member , Ekene Uwaoma .
This is just as a graduate of Electrical Engineering , University of Ilorin, Miss Taofeeqah Oloriegbe , died on Monday – five days to her convocation .
It was gathered that the Imo incident happened around 8 .30 pm at Ama- wire Junction, when the corps member and his friend , identified simply as MacDonald , were returning to their residence.
Uwaoma , 23 , was a 2016 graduate of History and International Studies from the Imo State University , Owerri , and was undertaking his one year National Youths Service Corps programme in Ogun State .
He hailed from Umudo -Anara , in the Isiala Mbano Local Government Area of the state and was the second son of his parents .
He was said to have come to the state to see his mother , Mrs . Mary Uwaoma , when he was murdered .
His friend , MacDonald , told our correspondent on the telephone on Tuesday that he was with the deceased when the gunmen waylaid them and demanded their mobile phones .
MacDonald said , “We were returning home from where we went to buy food . Suddenly , four boys bearing arms stopped and asked us to surrender our phones . I quickly gave them mine , but Ekene ( Uwaoma ) refused to surrender his phone .
“They started struggling and I ran away . They shot him on the chest and ran away . They also shot into the air to scare people away .”
MacDonald disclosed that the corps member was rushed to the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri , where doctors confirmed him dead .
“The gunmen didn ’ t go with his phone . It was a pity . This was the first time somebody was killed in my presence . I am heartbroken . His picture keeps appearing in my mind . I can ’t bear it,” he added .
A family member , who did not want his name in print , told our correspondent that Uwaoma ’ s death had thrown his family and village into mourning , adding that the deceased ’s mother had yet to recover from the shock .
The state Commissioner of Police , Chris Ezike , who confirmed the death to our correspondent , said the command had swung into action to apprehend the fleeing murderers .
In the UNILORIN incident , family and friends of Oloriegbe , a graduate of the institution , are mourning her death .
The lady , who finished with a Second Class ( Upper Division ) , was preparing for her convocation before her death on Monday . The ceremony is to be held on Saturday.
Although information regarding the cause of her death was still sketchy as of the time of filing this report , friends of the deceased said she died after a brief illness .
“She only complained about having pains in her hand , but she later died ,” one of her friends , who spoke on condition of anonymity , said .
The Public Relations Officer of the institution , Mr . Kunle Akogun , confirmed the death of the student through a text message .
He said , “The late Oloriegbe , a Second Class Upper graduate , was billed to graduate on Saturday at the 33 rd convocation of the UNILORIN . She died on Monday after suddenly taking ill while preparing for her upcoming graduation. May her gentle soul rest in peace .”
The UNILORIN Students ’ Union President , Mr . Adebisi Abimbola , described Oloriegbe ’s death as shocking and painful . He said the deceased was a gentle , friendly and hard working student .
He said , “I became extremely sober when I heard of her death. We used to be in the same class . She was very jovial, friendly , liberal and decent .
“I pray that God grant her family the fortitude to bear the loss .”