An ambulance conveying the corpse of the mother of a Catholic priest , Rev. Fr . Alex Onyemata , to a mortuary in Imo State was , on Sunday , gutted by fire .
While some said the inferno was a result of a leakage in the vehicle ’ s tank , others insisted that the deceased had warned before she died that her corpse should never be taken to the morgue .
Reports learnt that the incident, which occurred few metres to the Mercy Mortuary , Umulogho , in the Obowo Local Government Area of the state , saw the ambulance , a Toyota Sienna , burnt to ashes .
A source said , “The ambulance left the deceased woman’ s compound at Dikenta Avutu Obowo with the corpse around 4 pm and was engulfed in flames while on motion on the Owerri- Umuahia Expressway .
“ The corpse was rescued by the deceased’ s family members , who were accompanying it to the mortuary before the fire engulfed the vehicle.
“ The ambulance was on motion when the fire started from the fuel tank . On noticing it , the driver immediately parked and a crowd came to assist him with fire extinguishers , buckets of water mixed with detergent , buckets of sand and green leaves , but all to no avail.
“ As the fire became more intense , the bereaved family forced open the ambulance ’ s boot and brought down the corpse on a stretcher before the vehicle exploded and was burnt to ashes . ”
When contacted , the police spokesperson in the state , Orlando Ikeokwu , said , “ No official complaint was made to the police , but on receipt of the information , our men went to the scene of the incident.
The corpse was already evacuated and we met the burnt vehicle , which was evacuated from the road . ”
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