Why families of those who lost someone during Lagos #ENDSARS protest may not get their bodies

The management of Mainland Hospital, Lagos, says the state Ministry of Health has directed them not to release corpses of suspected #ENDSARS protesters.

The Chief Coroner of Lagos State, Mrs. Mojisola Dada, via a public announcement had directed relatives who had lost loved ones between October 19th and 27th to visit the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital to identify and claim bodies of their loved ones.

The public notice by the Lagos State coroner did not, however, state if the bodies that had been scheduled for release also included those of persons who died during the #EndSARS protest.

It reads in part, “This is to notify the General Public that the Chief Coroner of Lagos State, Hon Justice M. A. Dada (Mrs.) pursuant to Section 15, Coroner’s System Law of Lagos State, 2015 the Pathology Team would want all those who have lost loved ones between 19th – 27th October 2020 (that is, next-of-kin of the victims) to provide relevant information that would assist the identification exercise.

“The next-of kin should kindly contact the Department of Pathology and Forensic Medicine, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Oba Akinjobi Way, Ikeja for the identification exercise of the Deceased.”

But the Mainland Hospital mortuary in Yaba, Lagos, he front desk staff said there was a clear directive from the state government for morgue attendants not to release only the bodies of those who died before and after the #ENDSARS protests.

The Medical Director of Mainland Hospital, Dr. Abimbola Bowale, on his part said;

“It is only the commissioner (of health) or even Mr. Governor that can release the body to you, Sir. So, you will have to contact him,” he said.

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