Daily Trust (Abuja)

17 February 2013

Nigeria: Kaduna Fire - Family of Five Gets Help

Kaduna — Parents of five children who died in inferno early this month in Kaduna and a mentally ill girl who gave birth to a baby girl on January 30, 2013 at New Barrack Bus Stop in Kaduna have got financial assistance.

Maryam Mohammed who is the mother of the five children was on admission at St. Gerald's Hospital, Kaduna to be delivered of her sixth child when the fire incident happened.

Wife of Kaduna State Governor Hajia Fatima Mukhtar Ramalan Yero who visited the bereaved mother and the mentally sick rendered financial assistance to them.

At the new residence of the family in Ungwar Muazu in Kaduna, Mrs Yero gave an undisclosed amount of money to the parents of the deceased children while she consoled them.

She encouraged them to be strong at heart saying God giveth and God taketh.

Also, at the Kawo police station in Kaduna, the governor's wife gave financial assistance for the immediate upkeep of the mentally ill girl and her baby while she directed the sick girl be taken to psychiatric hospital for medical attention.

The girl who called herself as Fatima told Sunday Trust that her father and mother are Kabiru and Bose respectively.

According to her, they were very excited when she saw her baby.

It was gathered that the social welfare in Magajin Gari gave one of the food sellers close to where the mentally ill girl stays, Mrs Lizzy Nwagboso the child to take care of.

She warned men who put mentally ill women in a family way to desist from such act.

It was gathered that, that was the third time a mentally ill woman was delivered of a baby in the same place.

Responding, the spokesperson of Police in Kaduna, DSP Aminu Lawan commended the gesture of the governor's wife saying investigations into fishing out men who sleep with mentally ill women had commenced.

In an interview with mother of the dead children, amidst tears she said she is now left with a 12-year-old son who is in the Nigerian Military School (NMS) and the new born baby she went to be delivered of when the incident took place.

Explaining how she feels about the death of her children, she said every child has history of how they came into the world but that each time she thought of the words of Almighty Allah, she gave Him thanks but that it is only God that can console her.

According to the father of the children, Mohammed Ammin his wife was in labour in hospital and he was with her when the incident happen.

The eldest child is 17 years old. The second one was 10, the third nine years and the fourth five years while the fifth boy was not his son but son of his wife's friend whose father works in Igabi local government area.

On what caused the fire, he told Sunday Trust that the children came back from the hospital where they went to pray for their mother who was in labour for God to grant her safe delivery and put on a lamp.

"I took them back home after they had prayed for their mother and we ate together at home.

"There was no electricity that night, so a lamp was lit.

"Then the eldest of them went to the cyber cafe, so maybe when she came back, she was reading and then slept off.

"I can't really tell because I was not there. All I know was that I was called that my house was on fire and all my children died.

"What baffles me most is that my generator was in the parlour but did not get burnt but my children died," he narrated.

He thanked the governor's wife for her kind gesture as well as the governor whom he said visited him when the incident took place.

"This shows that they have the interest of the people at heart. We pray that God blesses and replenish them," he prayed.

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