Five workers, including the Manager of Treasureland Hotel in Calabar, Cross River State have been arrested by policemen in connection with the death of another employee of the hotel, Mr. Wisdom Edu, sources have said.
Nineteen-year-old Edu, a native of Adadama in Abi Local Government Area of the state, was found dead in the hotel swimming pool on November 9, 2012.
Sources at the hotel said he drowned after close of work, but the family of the deceased alleged that he was killed.
The family said he had complained before the incident that he was no longer comfortable working in the hotel.
A family member, Mr. Icha Mbotor, wondered why the management of the hotel opted to take Edu’s corpse to a mortuary, instead of contacting them first.
Mbotor said Edu was wearing a wristwatch but with his shirt and shoes removed while his jeans trousers and boxers were still on his body.
He added that it was strange that Edu’s stomach was flat, yet the boy drowned in a “shallow” swimming pool.
Mbotor said, “On getting to the mortuary, we discovered that what we saw on the picture were real. The hotel workers claimed that he was our observation, it was noticed that he was killed and thrown into the pool.
“Our suspicion is that he was killed. If he had gone to swim, there should not have been cuts on his head and his hands folded.
He was killed and thrown into the pool. He had complained the week before he died that he was no longer comfortable working there.
“The fact that they did not deem it necessary to contact the family of the deceased is suspicious and we strongly feel that the management have something to hide and given the standard of the hotel, there should be security officers around.”
But the Manager of the hotel, Mr. Mendie Udoh, described what happened as a natural death, adding that the police were still investigating to know exactly what led to the death of the worker.
He said, “The incident is just a natural death. Police are still investigating it. I may not know the cause but police have gone for autopsy.”
Udoh said he had seen Edu the previous night and sought to know why he was still around when he ought to have gone home.
“When I saw him in the night, I asked him why he was still around and he said his friend was celebrating his birthday and that he was invited to use the host’s laptop to play music at the occasion. There was no incident of fight, the event ended about 2am.”
When contacted, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. John Umoh, said investigations were ongoing.
The PPRO also did not disclose the number of arrest made though he said that some persons were invited to make statement on the matter.