The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Oyo state council has declared seven days mourning over the loss of three of its members in a ghastly auto crash of Friday at Osu area, near Ilesa, Osun state.
Some officials of the NUJ, mostly from Oyo and Lagos State councils were on Friday involved in a fatal auto crash which left Adolphous Okonkwo, who was the national financial secretary of the union, Kafayat Odunsi from the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) Victoria Island, Lagos and the chairman of the Radio Nigeria, Ibadan Network Centre of the NUJ, Tunde Oluwanike died in the incident.
A release issued by Oyo NUJ Secretary, Comrade Rotimi Babalola stated that the seven day mourning commences today (Saturday) and will last till Friday, August 9th after which special interdenominational prayers would be offered for the repose of the victims; quick recovery of the injured ones and to forestall future occurrence of such incident among the journalists.
It added that all activities including social events have been suspended forthwith at the Press Centre, Iyaganku, Ibadan while condolence register has also been opened at Executive Chambers of the union for members to pay their respect for their dead colleagues.
It would be recalled that following the incident, the victims were rushed to the Osun State General Hospital, Ilesa, from where they were referred to the Ladoke Akintola Teaching Hospital (LAUTECH), Osogbo, where the injured victims are currently receiving treatment.
Narrating their experience, the chairman of the NUJ, Oyo State council, Mr. Gbenga Opadotun said "We are coming from Abuja where we held a meeting and by the time our vehicle got to Osu area, the rear tyre of our bus burst and the vehicle veered off the road before we somersaulted about eight to nine times and finally crashed in the bush".
"It was a terrible experience because we lost three of our members in the accident. The rest of us involved in the accident survived by the grace of God", he said.
At the emergency unit of LAUTECH on Friday night, doctors and nurses were seen making frantic efforts to attend to the survivors of the accident, while the Osun state Deputy Governor and chairman of the NUJ, Osun State council, Mrs. Titi Laoye-Tomori and Comrade Abiodun Olalere mobilised support and care for the injured officials.