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Kogi Marine Operatives Searching For Keke Driver Who Jumped Into Meme River In Lokaja

Security operatives of the Marine Department, Kogi State Police Command, and a team of local divers have commenced the search for a yet-to-be-identified tricycle driver, popularly called Keke, who jumped into the Meme River in Lokoja, the state capital, on Tuesday, September 12.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, William Aya, disclosed this to Punch on Wednesday. Aya said, “Immediately the command got the information, we sent our men from our marine department in search of the man in conjunction with local divers.

”But up to this moment, efforts to recover the man have not yielded any positive result. The man was said to have come out of his tricycle by the bridge across the river in an apparent suicide mission for reasons best known to him.

A tricycle driver, who would not want his identity revealed, in an interview with the publication in Lokoja on Wednesday, said his colleague might have ended his life in such a tragic end due to the psychological trauma many tricycle drivers go through in such business, to meet ends meet nowadays.

He said,” It takes the grace of God and prayer for many of us to continue in the harsh economic climate attached to Okada and other means of transportation business, generally in the country.

“As a university graduate of about five years standing without a job, l went for a hired purchase keke napep of N1.9 million and supposed to pay back with N2.5 million, remitting N100,000 monthly to the person who sold the machine to me

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“Long after I purchased the machine, removal of fuel subsidy set in with the prices of fuel and spare parts for the machine hitting the roof, almost on a daily basis.

“As it is now, l can’t meet up with my monthly payment, not to talk of breaking even or making a profit to feed my wife and our two children and honour other financial commitments.

“Is this not enough for one to contemplate such a thing as suicide? If not God that is still sustaining us in this business.

“However, if it is true that the man committed suicide by plunging himself into a river due to harsh economic realities, I will say it is a very wrong and costly act. After all, tough time doesn’t last but tough people do.

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“At the same, a tragedy such as this serves as a wake-up call to the government to intensify efforts to ease the effect of the current economic climate and its impact on the lives of the people.”

“Efforts should also be made by the states and Federal Government to create more employment opportunities, especially for the youth to prevent them from taking decisions that will result in such an unpalatable end to life,” he urged.

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