Tragedy struck in Umuatuegwu Okija, Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State as family of five was reportedly wiped out after a meal of rice.
Father, mother and three children were said to have died vomiting blood after consuming rice for lunch.
The victims were Albert Ndenemenu, a commercial motorcyclist; his wife, Nwanne and their three children.
Although it was ascertained what led to their death, some members of the community said they may have died of poisoning.
While a version of the story said the victims ate poisoned food (rice), others alleged that a relation poisoned them.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the State, Mrs. Nkeiru Nwode, confirmed the incident.
She said investigations were ongoing, while awaiting the autopsy.
An eye witness said that Mrs. Nnwanne Ndenemu, who was the last to die, prepared a rice meal for the family’s lunch, which all of them ate and shortly after, her husband and her three children started vomiting blood.
“When people rushed into their compound following her alarm, it was discovered that they were already dead.
“The woman, on seeing the lifeless bodies of her husband and children, slumped and was taken to Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, where she also died,” our source stated.
An indigene of the area, Sir Ignatius Okonkwo, said that the cause of death of the five persons was yet to be ascertained, adding that efforts made to prevail on the authorities of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, where the bodies were first deposited, to conduct an autopsy on the dead persons did not yield any result.
An in-law to the family was said to have attempted to take the corpses to a mortuary, but when stories started doing the rounds that they might have been poisoned, he brought the five dead bodies back to their house where they were lined up in the open for several hours before some members of the family decided to return them to the mortuary.
It was gathered that three distant relations of the diseased persons had been invited by the police and they were being interrogated at the Okija Police Station.